I disagree with Tacoma Weekly’s view that the Citizens United decision is not a local issue and should not be addressed by Tacoma City Council (staff editorial, TW 11/23). Money in politics affects all levels of government. Currently people running for positions on Tacoma City Council find they must raise $60,000 or more to win an election. Raising this much money consumes time and energy that could be better spent doing the people’s business, talking to constituents and acquiring more information to help do the job for which they want to be elected. Money in campaigns is increasing and is hurting candidates who are well qualified for any government position, but do not have money of their own or wealthy friends to contribute to their campaign. I think we need the best and brightest people in our government, and forcing them to raise enormous amounts of money to be elected prevents many of them from succeeding in campaigns. This is a local, nonpartisan issue. I encourage the members of Tacoma City Council to bring a resolution forward to ask the Washington State Legislature to pass a memorial to Congress asking that the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision be reversed, and seeking an amendment to the Constitution stating that corporations are not “people” and that money is not “speech” protected by the First Amendment.
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