WESTCHESTER TEA PARTY:press release about call for constitutional amendment to eliminate free political speech for all groups except unions

WESTCHESTER TEA PARTY OPPOSES MOVE-ON’s AND NATIONAL DEMS’ CALL FOR CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT TO NEGATE SUPREME COURT’S FREE SPEECH DECISION IN CITIZENS UNITED CASE

Contact – Cornelia Mrose (914 – 831 82 52)

Date August 23, 2012

(White Plains) – Westchester’s Tea Party is alerting Westchester County voters that a resolution is circulating at town and city council meetings in Westchester County seeking to eliminate political free speech for non-profit corporations and businesses. The resolution asks for a constitutional amendment reversing the Supreme Court’s free speech decision in Citizen United v. Federal Election Commission.

The resolution, which has already passed in five local municipalities, reveals its partisan nature by the support given to it by the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee and other Democrat leaning and Union based organizations, stated Cornelia Mrose, Westchester Tea Party spokeswoman. “The proposed amendment would end free political speech for profit-loss and non-profit corporations alike (including civil rights organizations like the NAACP).” “It is ironic,” she continued, “that in the county where the John Peter Zenger case gave birth to freedom of speech, the Left has now attempted to suppress free speech for a significant portion of our Community.”

Ms Mrose also pointed out that the resolution that calls for stripping entrepreneurs and businesses as well as all non-profit groups of their right to free speech has been passed in five municipalities without consulting the community (Mount Vernon, Yonkers, Cortlandt, Peekskill,and Mount Kisco). The resolution was defeated in Lewisboro and Ossining.

Large liberal organizations like MoveOn, Public Citizen and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee are organizing the well-orchestrated and well-funded movement to strip non-profit organizations and businesses of their right to free speech leaving only unions in place to spend money on making their viewpoints public knowledge. In Lewisboro, for example, the town board was asked to support the resolution by South Salem resident Dale Silenok who – according to her own words before the town committee – works with “MoveOn Northern Westchester Council.”

The resolution does not call for limiting political speech of unions in any way. The demanded constitutional amendment would result in a situation where only unions would have the right to spend money on political radio, TV and internet advertisements whereas all profit-loss and non-profit groups would be silenced. The fact that unions are allowed to retain their right to free political speech demonstrates the inherent unfairness and bias of the demanded amendment.

The Facts of the Case

Once the facts of the Citizens United case are understood, taxpayers will realize how detrimental to American Freedoms the proposed constitutional amendment is. Citizen United is a non-profit corporation that in 2008 produced a documentary critical of then-Senator Hillary Clinton, a candidate for her party’s Presidential nomination. Anticipating that it would make Hillary (the movie) available on cable television through video-on-demand within 30 days of the primary election, Citizens United produced television ads to run on broadcast and cable television about its movie release on cable and in movie theaters. Rightfully concerned about the Federal Election Commission’s (FEC) imposing criminal and civil penalties upon it and its members for showing the movie, Citizens United sought declaratory and injunctive relief in the federal court, arguing that, among other grounds, the statute used by the FEC was unconstitutional.

The Supreme Court stepped forwarded in Citizens United to protect Americans from big government’s suppression of free speech. The Supreme Court’s Citizens’

United decision argues that all people, as individuals as well as organized in groups, have a right to free speech which includes free political speech. As a consequence, SCOTUS’

decision evens the playing field by requiring that non-profit corporations and businesses as well as labor unions be treated the same before the law for free speech purposes.

The First Amendment provides “Congress shall make no law . . abridging the freedom of speech.” Citizens who organize themselves in groups have the same freedom of speech as individuals. And clearly, the right to freedom of speech granted to citizens organized in groups extends to all groups, independent of their purpose. Groups whose purpose lies in organizing workers are in this regard not inherently different from groups formed to inform and educate or groups that exist in order to sell products or services to other groups or individuals.

Westchester’s Role in Constitutional History

The FEC’s action with regard to Hillary the Movie is reminiscent of the oppressive British governor who prosecuted John Peter Zenger, a local businessman, in 1734 for publishing stories about election corruption in Mount Vernon. As it happens, Mount Vernon played a big part in creating freedom of speech and a free press for this country. It started with the 1733 election held at the village green in front of St. Paul’s Church where some residents wanted to vote and others tried to block them. Businessman Zenger wrote about voting abuses in Mount Vernon, and in doing so he was critical of the colonial governor, which lead to his arrest and criminal trial. Similarly, the FEC threatened Citizen United nearly 275 year later.

Action against the circulating resolution

The proper course of action for the five municipalities that already passed the resolution is to reverse their votes and conduct hearings allowing citizens, corporations and organizations to be heard.

Ms. Mrose announced that the Westchester County Tea Party established a committee to monitor further attempts to present the resolution that calls for the repeal of political free speech for profit-loss and non-profit corporations. The committee will be headed by Rosemarie Jarosz of Mount Vernon who will coordinate informing citizens in Westchester County about the resolution and will speak against the resolution when presented to local councils.

Anyone interested in supporting the Westchester County Tea Party in their attempt to protect free speech and the county taxpayers should contact Ms. Jarosz at (917) 731-7275.

Bazzo 08/23/12

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2 responses to “WESTCHESTER TEA PARTY:press release about call for constitutional amendment to eliminate free political speech for all groups except unions

  1. The Move To Amend proposal treats unions exactly the same as corporations. The apparent flaw is that it doesn’t explicitly name them alongside corporations, but that is truly just an apparent flaw as the language is unambiguous in its call to end unalienable rights for ALL legal fictions. The relevant portion:

    “Artificial entities, such as corporations, limited liability companies, and other entities, established by the laws of any State, the United States, or any foreign state shall have no rights under this Constitution and are subject to regulation by the People, through Federal, State, or local law.”

    All groups will continue to exercise the first amendment rights of the individual members, as is and has been the case in statutory law all along. The right to assembly is not the same as the privilege of association. Really.

    Wanna fight? Take it over here:
    http://www.amendmentgazette.com/

  2. After re-reading I realized I’d misread MoveOn as Move To Amend. Dangers of multitasking. My bad. But still, the Move To Amend language is as I described and MTA has been instrumental in most of the resolutions passed around the country. Check it out: http://movetoamend.org/

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