September 18, 2010: In today's weekly address, Presdident Obama spoke about the Citizens United decision, and the gaping loophole it has opened in campaign finance laws. He warned that 'shadow groups' were running deceptive attack ads through front organizations, with no requirement to disclose the source of their finances. Mr. Obama described the flood of right-wing special interest money in the current election cycle as a "power grab" by the Republicans.
Below is a excerpt from The Hill's coverage of Mr. Obama's address: President Obama on Saturday slammed congressional Republicans for opposing efforts that would force special-interest groups to disclose their donors for campaign-related activities. Obama’s salvo comes in the midst of an intense midterm election season in which the GOP has been gaining momentum and is seen as potentially gaining enough seats in the House to be in majority and diminish the Democratic majority in the Senate. Obama and many leading Democrats condemned a Supreme Court decision earlier this year in a case known as Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission that removed restrictions on campaign spending by corporations and unions, allowing them to spend unlimited funds on election activities to expressly advocate for or against a candidate’s election. The Supreme Court’s decision “gave the special interests the power to spend without limit – and without public disclosure – to run ads in order to influence elections,” Obama said in his weekly address to the nation. Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), both leading Democrats, have worked on a legislative response to blunt the court’s ruling. Known as the Disclose Act, the legislation tries to force groups to disclose where the money for their advertising is coming from. Corporate and union officials as well as their top donors would have to stand by their ads and disclose their identities in the ads, just as federal politicians must do. FULL STORY HERE: