The Legalization of Buying Power

The Legalization of Buying Power

WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J. – Citizens United is a campaign strategy, recently legalized, to allow politicians running for office to accept financial assistance from a benefactor in efforts to have a stronger campaign and opportunity to have the greater voter turnout.
Allowing the Citizen United campaign strategy to be applied has created an open door for changing the platform of the participants who are running. The campaign changed the financial rules that potential candidates have to follow, allowing them to have outside financial support.
According to The New Yorker, this financial freedom for political gain could potentially lead to the legalization of bribery. Sponsors could create a strong presence over their politician, making it simple and easy to guide them in the direction they would benefit. This also allows the wealthy to have a hand in the pot of in office positions.

The Citizens United Act opens the door for potential bribery between donors and campaigning officials.
https://insights.ethisphere.com/commercial-bribery/

The New Yorker uses Bob McDonnell, the governor of Virginia, to show just how much damage can be caused. McDonnell and his wife are being convicted of accepting hundreds of thousands of dollars in vacations, luxury gifts, and loans from wealthy businessman Jonnie R. Williams before McDonnell’s stay in office. According to McDonnell’s lawyer, Noel Francisco, Williams only paid for access, which is typically legal, not government action. Williams had asked that McDonnell promote his nutritional-supplement exercise, and while Francisco claimed there was no ‘official action’ taken, McDonell did host a luncheon to announce the launch of the supplements and use his prestige to set up meetings for Williams at the University of Virginia’s medical school. However, Francisco’s argument is strengthened by the Citizens United act.
In the opposition of Citizens United, I can agree with what Justice Anthony Kennedy said in 2010. He stated that money becomes the controller of speech and any money given for speech eliminates the First Amendment protection when the person is being paid to represent a version of speech that isn’t their own, concluding that Citizen United should be banned.
James McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, made a statement regarding their trial during a 2014 press conference.
https://wtop.com/virginia/2016/01/former-va-governors-corruption-appeal-reaches-supreme-court/

I agree with this comment. The paper trail with money and numbers can be analyzed as honest work in official records and courtroom cases, but it is just bribery. In the case of McDonnell and his wife, it is argued that it was just speech and nothing else.
The argument claims that paying for access is legal, while paying for action is illegal. In the end, it was concluded that no bribery took place.
I disagree with the notion of allowing outside and uncleared sources of financial support be allowed to happen legally. This method of financial support for candidates limits their work ethic towards fundraising and connecting with their community to gain their support. As a result, the people may be less informed about who is running for office. It is the responsibility of the campaigning candidate to create a relationship with the people he or she will be representing, typically also gaining trust and donations from them as a representation of their understanding of who and what they are voting for. Although the financial support is typically given before the official in in permanent office, any benefactor investing in a candidate without a doubt in my opinion, most definitely gains a source of power that can produce illegal activity.

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