Campaign Finance Reform
Corporate influence in politics is one of the most pressing issues our country faces – and is a direct threat to our democracy. The voices of small donors and individuals should not be drowned out by corporations that spend hundreds of millions of dollars on political campaigns – and with no transparency or accountability.
Following the 2010 Supreme Court decision, Citizens United v. FEC, Congressman Blumenauer is fighting in Congress to affirm that the rights extended by the Constitution are the rights of natural persons only. Corporations should not have the same free-speech protections as individuals, or the right to buy unlimited influence in our elections. Congressman Blumenauer supports amending the Constitution to reverse Citizens United v. FEC, as well as McCutcheon v. FEC – another highly controversial case decided in favor of corporations and America’s wealthiest donors. He also supports legislation to publicly finance Congressional elections, reduce the influence of big donors, diversify the pool of political candidates, and encourage campaigns to build bases of real people instead of companies.
Congressman Blumenauer launched his career in public service by spearheading the effort to lower the voting age both in Oregon and at the national level, while still a student at Lewis and Clark College.
Since then, Congressman Blumenauer has continued his devotion to voters’ rights because while our country has made great strides to enfranchise its citizens, more work needs to be done to ensure that all eligible voters are able to vote, especially in the wake of the Supreme Court's 2013 decision in Shelby County v. Holder, which effectively gutted the Voting Rights Act.
He is a strong advocate for Oregon’s all vote-by-mail system and introduced legislation to make Oregon’s model a national policy. Vote-by-mail is a common-sense solution that is highly effective, reduces opportunities for cheating and mistakes, costs less, and provides reliable results while voting. His legislation also makes automatic voter registration a federal policy.
Partisan gerrymandering of Congressional districts after the 2010 census can contribute to an outcome like in the 2012 election, when House Democratic candidates won over 50 percent of the vote, but only won 46 percent of the seats.
The Supreme Court recently ruled in favor of Arizona’s Independent Redistricting Commission to draw Congressional boundaries. Congressman Blumenauer applauded this ruling and supports steps that other states have taken to curb gerrymandering. However, because independent commissions are not necessarily insulated from the same partisan forces that affect redistricting by state legislatures, Congressman Blumenauer supports the creation of a national commission for independent redistricting, taking the process out of the states entirely, and has championed legislation to do so.