Take the Money Out Activists Disrupt President Obama Again, Demanding Money Out of Elections

Press Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Oct. 4, 2012-Action Happening NOW!

CONTACT:
Jennifer Flynn (917) 517-5202 jenniferaliceflynn@gmail.com
Paul Davis (215) 833-4102 pdavisxpolls@gmail.com

Take the Money Out Activists Strike Again!

Disrupt Obama Campaign Stop with Banners Supporting a Constitutional
Amendment that Corporate Money is Not Free Speech

(Denver) Signs calling for a Constitutional amendment to stop
unlimited spending on elections were greeted with cheers at President
Barack Obama’s reelection rally in Denver Thursday morning. No arrests
were made, but a banner was unfurled as President Obama began his
remarks.

Paul Davis, leader of the Take The Money Out action in Denver, and
longtime AIDS activist, said the corrupting influence of dirty money
has turned political campaigns into auctions. “We need elections
controlled by an informed populace, not secret money paid by wealthy
interests. The expectation when 50 millionaires pay for attack ads is
that they will get favors in return from the candidates they help
elect. The result is a corrupt political process, robbing equal free
speech access from rest of us.”

Sam Sitrin, another Take the Money Out activists is concerned with the
big money special interest groups running ads intended to distort key
issues like social services, global health and climate policy, said:
“I am here today because I know that corporations are not people and
therefore corporate speech should not be protected the way
individuals’ free speech is.”

Signs included: “SUPERPAC$ ≠ FREE SPEECH AMEND the CONSTITUTION
@TakeTheMoneyOut” and “CORPORATIONS ≠ PEOPLE AMEND the CONSTITUTION
@TakeTheMoneyOut”.

With the campaign season heating up, President Obama committed
publicly during an online forum hosted by the website Reddit that he
would support a constitutional amendment to roll back unlimited
corporate campaign contributions. Democrats including Nancy Pelosi
(CA), Steny Hoyer (MD), Tom Harkin (IA), Keith Ellison (MN) and Peter
Welch (VT) have expressed their own willingness to undo Citizens
United. Onstage at the Democratic Convention in Charlotte, Rep. Pelosi
siad, “We believe in government of the many, not the privileged few.”

Take the Money Out Activsts have interrupted dozens of Obama, Romney,
Ryan and Biden campaign stops for the past few months.

For more info, follow @TakeTheMoneyOut on Twitter or “Like”
Facebook.com/TakeTheMoneyOut

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PRESS RELEASE: 3 Banners Just Unfurled at Ohio Gun Show Featuring VP Candidate Paul Ryan

Press Release
September 27, 2012

Embargoed until Saturday, 9/29/12, 7:30 p.m. -Breaking Action

Contact:  Jennifer Flynn, 917-517-5202 • jenniferaliceflynn@gmail.com

Activists Disrupt V.P Candidate Paul Ryan at Gun Show Holding Banners Demanding Money Out of Politics

Columbus, Ohio:  Following two other actions this week of Presidential campaign stops in Ohio, #TakeTheMoneyOut activists are attending the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance event featuring Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan. The activists pulled out a giant hunter orange banner, reading, “Pull the Trigger on Super PACS $$ / Amend the Constitution / #TakeTheMoneyOut.”

“The Sportmen’s rally is called ‘Save Our Heritage,’” reports Michael Tikili from Take the Money Out. “We are demanding that all of the candidates restore our democratic heritage by returning up to citizen-led elections. Because of unfettered corporate money in politics, what we have now is an auction. In order to preserve the Constitution, we need both presidential campaigns to commit to an amendment to that states clearly that corporate campaign cash is not free speech and overturns Citizens United,” he continued. 

A rapidly growing movement of grassroots acitvists are coming together under the banner of #TakeTheMoneyOut and engaging in and escalating number of disruptions of Presidential and Vice Presidential campaign visits. There were already two disruptions of both Romney and Obama events in Ohio this week, following on similar actions by like-minded groups in NH, MA, NY, PA, DC, VA, NC, MI, and IA. New teams are gearing up in CO, KY and FL for the debates coming to those states. For the first time in history, both Presidential candidates have rejected federal funding in order to exceed mandated federal limits on spending.

For more info, follow @TakeTheMoneyOut on Twitter or “Like” Facebook.com/TakeTheMoneyOut

For more information about this week’s previous disruptions of campaign events, please go to:
http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/washington-whispers/2012/09/26/protesters-disrupt-obama-campaign-event-in-ohio-demanding-money-out-of-politics
http://features.rr.com/photo/0cD1dCo3PBfbA?q=Ohio

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PRESS RELEASE: Activists Disrupt President Obama Campaign Event Holding Banners Demanding Money Out of Politics

Take the Money Out
www.TakeTheMoneyOut.tumblr.com

September 22, 2012

For Immediate Release: Breaking Action

Contact:  Jennifer Flynn, 
917-517-5202 
jenniferaliceflynn@gmail.com

Activists Disrupt President Obama Campaign Event Holding Banners Demanding Money Out of Politics

Bowling Green, Ohio:  At today’s Obama campaign event, activists from around the country disrupted the event holding 2 banners saying, “Buck the Billionaires, $$ \= Free Speech, #TakeTheMoneyOut” and Romney=PAC puppet, amend the Constitution, #TakeTheMoneyOut”


Several weeks ago, President Barack Obama committed publicly during an online forum hosted by Reddit that he would support a constitutional amendment to roll back unlimited corporate campaign contributions. Elected officials the Democratic National Convention echoed this call.

Take The Money Out activists have been engaging in weekly disruptions of Presidential and Vice Presidential campaign visits to demand money out of politics.

Both candidates have rejected federal funding in order to exceed mandated federal limits.

For more info, follow @TakeTheMoneyOut on Twitter or “Like” Facebook.com/TakeTheMoneyOut

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Pay to Play: A Perspective on Money in Politics and Healthcare

Author: Michael Lighty is Policy Director of the California Nurses Association, a labor union and professional association of registered nurses.

“Money equals speech” is like getting all the healthcare you can afford. And not in a good way. Essential social goods – political participation and access to necessary health services - are allocated based on ability to pay. When that happens, it’s easy to see who wins and who loses. The gains go to the top and the rest of us have to fight for what we need. It’s a system worsened by the dynamics of a finance-dominated economy, where such inequalities drive the system. The incentives for big wins, based on big bets, create the search for the most exotic financial instruments. The few who possess the unique asset or the inside knowledge, or the fastest algorithm, win. Except when they don’t, and when they lose, they lose big. The winnings go the few, the losses are spread around. Private gains, socialized pain.

It would sound familiar to a nurse on the front lines of today’s healthcare “non-system.” Those with the best private plans get access to the latest technology, the newest drugs, the private rooms in the elite medical centers. Those on Medicaid wait for the few doctors who take it, and often pay more for necessities such as eyeglasses. Nursing homes are the most expensive form of end-of-life care and are mostly paid for by public programs. The most expensive and “needy” patients – seniors – are covered by the social insurance program, Medicare. Except for the wealthiest seniors, of course. 

These are the direct result of a political system that allocates rewards based on ability to pay. Nine out of ten times the candidate who spends the most, wins. The biggest political donors come primarily from a faction of the wealthiest 1%. Court decisions by judges, who themselves usually come from the wealthiest political class, and appointed by politicians funded by those donors, have expanded the equation of money equals speech to the nth degree. Congress responds accordingly. Though passing social legislation, or other policy changes is difficult and optional, the one item that most pass is the budget.

Appropriations is the game in Washington. And the wealthy and the corporate class pay dearly for the access to get their share. So when it comes to access to healthcare, the insurance companies, the big hospital chains and academic medical centers related to bio-tech and medical research, the pharmaceutical companies all come first. The system is built around their “needs,” not the patients’ needs, not the needs of society.

Costs are for taxpayers, profits are for the corporations and wealthy. It’s the natural order of a pay-to-play system.

As he spoke, three protesters shouting about HIV/AIDS funding and corporate money were escorted out as the crowd chanted "USA." The protesters were from the "Take the Money Out Of Politics Campaign" group opposed to the Supreme Court’s Citizens United ruling that permitted unlimited private funding of election campaigns.

PRESS RELEASE: PROTESTORS DISRUPT ROMNEY AND RYAN CAMPAIGN STOPS: DEMAND MONEY OUT OF POLITICS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Friday, Sept. 14, 2012 
CONTACT:  Jennifer Flynn | (917) 517-5202 | jenniferaliceflynn@gmail.com


PROTESTORS TO DISRUPT ROMNEY AND RYAN CAMPAIGN STOPS:  DEMAND MONEY OUT OF POLITICS

(Washington, DC and New York) Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney held a high priced fundraiser in New York City.  As the big donors were entering the breakfast, Take the Money Out of Politics protestors threw hundreds of dollars stamped with messages like, “Not to be used for bribing politicians, Amend the Constitution.” in the air. 

Pandemonium erupted as wealthy donors jumped for dollar bills as they flew through the lobby.  “Just as these donors are jumping for dollars, both political candidates jump to accommodate the needs of the wealthy that fund their elections.  Just like there is chaos in the lobby of the Hilton Hotel right now, there is increasing chaos in our political system.”, said Megan Mulholland of QUEEROCRACY.

“The 2012 elections are officially being auctioned off to the highest bidder, empowering the 1% to choose our representatives in Washington,” said Bobby Tolbert, board member of VOCAL-NY Action Fund and living with HIV/AIDS, “For me, the buying of our democracy could literally be life threatening since the sole aim of the big donors is to avoid paying their fair share of taxes which fund vital programs like Medicaid and keep the social safety-net in place.”

In Washington, DC, activists unveiled a banner in front of Vice-Presidential Candidate Paul Ryan that read Corporations Are Not People. They Can’t Go To Heaven. Amend The Constitution @takethemoneyout.

The activists chanted “Corporate Values Out, Christian Values In, Citizens United, Ryan Its A Sin” as they were escorted from the event, which was also attended by Ann Romney, Congressman Eric Cantor, and Michele Bachmann.  

Both Ryan and Romney have stated that they support the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision. Congressman Ryan authored a budget that would dramatically slash social safety-net programs that pay for housing and medicine low income individuals in the United States and around the world. 

“I do vote my values and my values include making sure that everyone in my community has access to affordable housing, has food to eat, has a good job.  I understand that taxes provide these services.  I expect my government to help me and my neighbors in a time of crisis.  Unfortunately, both candidates don’t vote for my values.  They vote in the interest of corporations.”, said Sam Sitrin, a member of ACT UP Philadelphia.

Two weeks ago, President Barack Obama committed publicly during an online forum hosted by Reddit that he would support a constitutional amendment to roll back unlimited corporate campaign contributions. Elected officials at last week’s Democratic National Convention echoed this call.

Both candidates have rejected federal funding in order to exceed mandated federal limits. 

For more info, follow @TakeTheMoneyOut on Twitter or “Like” Facebook.com/TakeTheMoneyOut

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PRESS RELEASE: AS ROMNEY TALKS ABOUT “CURRENCY WARS” PROTESTORS DISRUPT and DEMAND MONEY OUT OF POLITICS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  Sept. 12, 2012 
CONTACT: Jennifer Flynn | (917) 517-5202 | jenniferaliceflynn@gmail.com

AS ROMNEY TALKS ABOUT “CURRENCY WARS” PROTESTORS DISRUPT and DEMAND MONEY OUT OF POLITICS (Fairfax, VA)

Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney held an outdoor rally on September 13, 2012 in Fairfax, VA. As he reached the point in his stump speech about “currency wars” with China, a handful of Take the Money Out of Politics activists pulled out signs that read “Count Votes, Not Money” #takethemoneyout. The 2 activists were evicted by the police. Romney supporters continued the protest by interrupting his speech to scream, “USA, USA.”

“What the American public needs to realize is that this isn’t just about donations to pay for campaign ads. Corporate money drives the policy agenda of both parties. The Republicans are now fighting against full funding for their own project-PEPFAR-created by President George W. Bush because of the pharmaceutical industries financial support. Both parties need money out of politics to truly represent the American people,” said Luc Messac a member of ACT UP Philadelphia.

Two weeks ago, President Barack Obama committed publicly during an online forum hosted by Reddit that he would support a constitutional amendment to roll back unlimited corporate campaign contributions. Elected officials at last week’s Democratic National Convention echoed this call.

Both candidates have rejected federal funding in order to exceed mandated federal limits.

For more info, follow @TakeTheMoneyOut on Twitter or “Like” Facebook.com/TakeTheMoneyOut

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Corporations Don’t Breathe: A Healthcare Perspective on Money in Politics

Author: Annette Gaudino is a member of Healthcare for the 99% and ACT UP New York.

The Supreme Court of the United States made two recent decisions that affects the access to healthcare for every American. The most obvious decision is the recent support for the individual mandate to purchase private insurance contained in the Affordable Care Act. However, it is the Citizens United decision, which ruled that money is equivalent to free speech and further codified the doctrine that corporations are people, which arguably had the greater impact on our healthcare system. Because of Citizens United and the selling of our political system to the highest bidder, a system based on private, for-profit insurance was presented to the American people as ‘reform.’

Corporations don’t breath, corporations don’t bleed, they don’t die and they don’t grieve. Only people do those things. Healthcare is a human right, a public good, and not a commodity to be traded or a luxury for those who can afford it. Wall Street and corporate executives — rather than health professionals — run the U.S. healthcare industry. The profiteering of private insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies is killing and impoverishing Americans every day. America’s system of for-profit, job-based healthcare is a threat to our human rights and economic stability both as individuals and as a country. We believe the work of dismantling Wall Street’s stranglehold over our economic and political system can begin by freeing our healthcare system from their control by creating single payer systems at the state level. But to finally free our human needs from their corporate greed, we must overturn Citizens United.

Healthcare for the 99% is a working group of OWS. We are doctors, nurses, medical students, people living with illness, the momentarily healthy, the uninsured, the insured, burdened by debt or facing bankruptcy because we needed medical care. Together, we are a united front committed to changing the way our system segregates us into these separate and unequal classes of patients forced to compete for care. Our stance is based on overwhelming evidence from around the world that it is possible to have better healthcare for much less than we currently spend by treating it as a universal public good, free from profit and barriers to access.

Big Money, Bigger Problems: A Queer Perspective on Money in Politics

Author: Billy Livsey is an activist/musician. He was in a legendary queer punk band called USED CONDOMS! He is a charter member of ACT UP and an Occupier with a list of open cases.

Big Money is pouring into politics. Hundreds of millions of dollars are making a virtual auction out of this election season.  

Washington is for sale. The highest bidder is buying, and our elected representatives are behind the counter only too willing to help them.. The voters are allowing it! 

Does anyone believe that “FreedomWorks,” the organization funded by former Speaker of the House Dick Armey, is really interested in the people of America? Does anyone believe that “Americans for Prosperity,” the  organization founded by the billionaire Koch brothers (David and Charles) cares about average Americans?

Not on your life. Their sole objective is to elect members of Congress who will look out for them. And thanks to the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. FEC, these, and other organizations like them, don’t even have to disclose where their money is coming from.

I have to give Big Money credit. They have done a great job obscuring their agenda — and pulling the wool over the eyes of the voters. They’re like magicians engaging in sleight of hand. They keep the audience’s attention focused on one hand while the other hand is really where the action is.

Big Money appeals to the masses by advocating for “lower taxes, less government, and more freedom.“ These are things that “the rest of us” can relate to – even when we don’t know what such slogans mean to us individually, or what the consequences of actions would be. Voters think they will benefit from such actions, but what Big Money really means in lower taxes for corporations, less government regulation of business and more freedom to defraud the average American.

So why should queers look up from Grinder long enough to care?? Well why do you think? Housing— Health Care— the Environment! Queer voices— like everyone else, can not be heard above the cha ching of Big Money pouring into elections at every level from  local to Presidential! No matter what issues drive you— you are not being heard in this political climate! The saddest thing is that the people who buy into the message of the Big Money propaganda machine don’t even know that they are being manipulated by forces far more threatening to our well-being than the government.

The most visible manifestation of the Big Money propaganda machine is the Tea Party. Although most of its “members” like to say the Tea Party is a grass-roots movement, the movement was begun by Dick Armey’s “FreedomWorks,” and continues to get much of its support from the Koch brothers’ “Americans for Prosperity.”

Big Money spends hundreds of millions of dollars every year making sure that they get legislation that benefits them – not the people they got fired up during the election.

  • All those social issues they made so important during the election – forgotten, they don’t affect profits.

  • All those promises to reduce our taxes. Forget it. The lobbyists look out for the rich.

  • All those regulations we talked about – irrelevant, unless they affect our profits. Jobs creation – forget it. Big Money gets what it wants, and the rest of us are on our own.

Voters who think they are reducing the power of government are, in reality, turning control of the economy, and the nation, over to the unelected elite who have no interest in the concerns of those same voters.

Wake up America. It’s time we realized what is happening – and put a stop to it.

More footage from yesterday’s disruption of the National Journal Energy Panel during the DNC.