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Talking Points for Letters to Our State Congress Persons In support of a Constitutional Amendment Limiting Free Speech and other Constitutional Rights to We the People and not to Corporations Guidelines: Please write your letter by hand and in your own words. Your elected official knows that such letters take some work and they take them much more seriously than word document or copied letters. Start the letter with your official’s title, name and address, then “Dear Representative/Senator NAME” Points To Be Made Paragraph By Paragraph: 1. Ask your official to co-sponsor Docket #1488, a resolution introduced by Senator Eldridge saying that free speech and other constitutional rights are for people, not legal entities such as corporations. 2. Say who you are in one sentence. 3. Say why you are concerned about the power of corporations in our democracy. 4. It’s time to take action to do something about this. 5. Why we need a constitutional amendment and not just a new law – only a constitutional amendment can overturn a Supreme Court decision like Citizens United. 6. Remind her/him that state legislatures have an important role to play in amending the Constitution as it is the states who ratify constitutional amendments. 7. Let your official know you are counting on them to co-sponsor the resolution and ask her/him to get back to you. 8. Sign with your full name and address so your official knows you are her/his constituent. A Brief Background: Eight states currently have a resolution calling on the US Congress to begin debate on a Constitutional Amendment limiting constitutional rights to living, breathing human beings. Massachusetts is one of these. Senator Jamie Eldridge of Acton has introduced such a resolution under Docket #1488. He has stated that all need to get behind it this year before we end up with the US becoming a corporate state. On the national level Senators Max Baucus of Montana and Michael Bennet of Colorado and Representative Donna Edwards of Maryland have introduced resolutions calling for a constitutional amendment. Such an amendment will protect your free speech, your vote and restore common sense to our elections and democracy. Jamie Raskin, Maryland State Senator and professor of constitutional law at American University says the problem with the Citizens United decision is that it “misdefines what a corporation is.” A corporation is a legal entity set up by the state, not a citizen. He says that it undermines the political rights of people to have corporate money, not assembled for political reasons, used to influence elections. He states that already in the 2010 congressional election at least $300 million was spent covertly by corporations donating to 501-c4 organizations to influence the elections. Such organizations do not have to disclose the names of their donors. These groups went into the field and basically constructed a wall of propaganda to influence the elections.