City ballot initiative seeks to curb corporate power

March 15, 2012

Feb. 12, 2012 | For Immediate Release

City ballot initiative seeks to curb corporate power

SALT LAKE CITY--A new group of Utah activists has joined a national movement to reinvigorate democracy by curbing corporate power. The Move to Amend Campaign seeks to amend the US Constitution to reduce the power and influence of corporations in American society and government. The movement’s first effort is to pass city ballot initiatives in 50 cities nationwide this year, including Salt Lake City.

The Move to Amend Salt Lake kick-off meeting will be at 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 15, at the Salt Lake City Main Library, Conference Room B downstairs.

The group is currently seeking signatures for a Salt Lake City ballot initiative that would ask city voters on the November ballot to endorse a nationwide constitutional amendment to end so-called “corporate personhood.”

The ballot initiative states:

1. Only human beings, not corporations, are endowed with constitutional rights, and

2. Money is not speech, and therefore regulating political contributions and spending is not equivalent to limiting political speech.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the People of Salt Lake City, hereby instruct our state and federal representatives to enact resolutions and legislation to advance this effort.

“Money is not speech, corporations are not people and votes should have more influence than campaign donations,” says Move to Amend Salt Lake organizer Ashley Sanders. “Yet our government is so corrupted by corporate money that amending the Constitution is the only effort strong enough to truly rescue democracy from the bite of crony capitalism.”

The need for an amendment to the Constitution became even more necessary after the 2010 Citizen’s United Supreme Court decision in which the court reaffirmed that corporations have the same rights as people and declared that corporate money may be spent in elections as freely as words are spoken. The case gutted all regulations on corporate donations to political parties and candidates and--unless a Constitutional amendment is approved--precludes any meaningful campaign finance reforms in the future.

To be placed on the November ballot, Move to Amend Salt Lake will need to gather at least 7,141 signatures by April 15th. The goal is to finish with 9,000 signatures.

The kick-off meeting invitation can be found at:

Media contact:

Ashley Sanders