Constitutional Amendment? Action, Not Words

president_barack_obama1by GENE HOWINGTON

Political news website The Hill is reporting that Obama allegedly told a group at a fundraiser that he might be in a “strong position” to amend the Constitution. The supposed aim? To undo the damage done to democracy by the odious and (to the minds of more an just me) manifestly unconstitutional Citizens United ruling.  According to an an excerpt from Big Money by journalist Ken Vogel, originally obtained by Mother Jones, he made the comments at a closed-door, high-dollar 2012 fundraiser in Seattle.

“Now, I taught constitutional law. I don’t tinker with the Constitution lightly. But I think this is important enough that citizens have to get mobilized around this issue, and this will probably be a multiyear effort. [. . .] After my reelection, my sense is that I may be in a very strong position to do it.”

Later that year, the president publicly endorsed a constitutional amendment that would overturn the controversial Citizens United decision that allowed unlimited political spending by outside groups.

President Obama, at this point, your track record for keeping manifest promises let alone speculation is not very good. Some would say dismal. In fact, I know more than one lawyer of the opinion that despite teaching Constitutional Law, you don’t seem to understand or respect it very well in action.  Actions speak louder than words, Mr. President. Will you stand up for the legal principle that rights are inherent to people and not legal fictions or will you continue to ignore the lie in principle that underpins Citizens United and helps undermine democracy? Time will tell, but that clock?  She is a tickin’.

Could this be something substantive? Some have speculated he’s planning a big move second term to secure his legacy.  Is this it?  Or have the corporatist/fascists (whom he has a record of siding with on other matters) already won? Me? I’ll believe it when it’s up for ratification.

What do you think?

About Gene Howington

I write and do other stuff.
This entry was posted in Campaign Finance, Constitutional Law, Government, Jurisprudence, Politics, SCOTUS, United States. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Constitutional Amendment? Action, Not Words

  1. Slartibartfast says:


    I certainly hope President Obama does something in his second term to secure his legacy, but every day he waits to start makes it less likely to succeed and less likely to affect the midterms.

    I have a better opinion of President Obama in general and probably think that there is a greater chance of this happening that you do, but at this point, you are right:


  2. swarthmoremom says: “The hearing today is political theater, with both sides able to appeal to their base,” said Hasen. “You can’t even get a disclosure law through the United States Senate, much less a constitutional amendment.” “

  3. pete says:

    it only took 202 years to pass the 27th amendment. this should be a piece of (insert word of choice here).

  4. Blouise says:

    Delusional … just talking the talk and insulting our intelligence to boot

  5. Mike Spindell says:

    “Could this be something substantive? Some have speculated he’s planning a big move second term to secure his legacy. Is this it? Or have the corporatist/fascists (whom he has a record of siding with on other matters) already won?”

    To wax in a cliched manner: He doesn’t stand a snowball’s chance in hell to accomplish that, even if he were serious, which I doubt based on performance thus far.

  6. bron98 says:

    I think he is a budding dictator and if he is for it, I am against it.

  7. It won’t happen for a lot of reasons, B, but your opposition to such an amendment as a matter of legal theory is irrational. You’ve bought into the fundamental lie that corporations are people and they are not nor have they ever been and for reasons that have been explained to you many times. I will agree that Obama is, like Bush before him, a step toward an eventual dictator. Probably under a scenario where elections are suspended due to some trumped up national emergency or an actual emergency taken advantage of by the fascists who favor shit like Citizens United in the first place (meaning those who understand the true legal implications of expanding corporate personality as a matter of legal theory, unlike you who is simply mistaken).

  8. bron98 says:

    I am a corporation owner. An S-Corp. Why shouldnt I be able to give money through the corporation? So what if corporations are legal fiction, There is no corporation now existing, which could challenge the US government to power.

    How the money gets to congress is not the problem. But then you never could think in broad principles.

    If congress passed a flat tax with no exceptions and made regulations based on actual science, much of the money would be gone from politics.

  9. Tony C. says:

    Bron: As an S-Corp, all income passes through to you, so you can donate any money you want yourself. You don’t need to do it in the name of the S-Corp. So the reason “why not” is that it doesn’t harm you, and does harm the rest of us when giant corporations give unlimited amounts of money, which is NOT theirs to give but belongs to their shareholders and is being given against the will of many of them for purposes that we oppose.

    That is your key misunderstanding, as the owner of your S-Corp you obviously and inherently represent the wishes of its owner. But in other corporations with many shareholders, the officers of the corporation are supposed to be serving the wishes of the shareholders, and they obviously are NOT doing that if the majority of the shareholders would disagree with their decisions — If they even knew about those decisions. But the assholes have succeeded in keeping those decisions secret and self-serving, instead of corporate serving. How? By bribing politicians and judges to agree with them, of course, for the last 60 years or so, to insulate them from the people that supposedly “own” the corporation, so they can rip them off left and right, and keep the money flowing into the pockets of Congressmen.

  10. Hope and change-there was no hope and only change for the worst.

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