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  1. Reed Perkins

    I think Staggenborg makes a lot of smart points. First, his amendment proposal is unique in explicitly banning contributions from "non-living entities." It intuitively makes sense to me that this would be more effective than simply empowering Congress (already in hock to special interests) to regulate its own corruption. At the very least, it would require an additional heavy lift on the part of activists to make sure that individual members of Congress follow through, and even then, having lots of hands in there to water down the legislation should be cause for concern.

    Second, I like that he includes a clause addressing the congressional/special interest revolving door. This may struck some as too expansive, but we have to be realistic about all of the ways industry is capable of corrupting our political process, and one of them is handing out big fat paychecks to friendly legislators and staffers should they ever want to "join the private sector." Not surprisingly, they do.

    Finally, I'm interested in the explicit carve out that "persons" would still apply to corporations in so far as it pertains to conducting normal business (and being regulated) according to state and federal law. A neighbor of mine (who happens to be a lawyer on wall street) was quick to poke holes in amendments that made blanket statements denying "personhood" to corporations based on the uncertainty it would create under the law—apparently many statutes that currently cover corporate behavior are written using language such as "no person shall", etc. I'd like to hear other's opinions on this. You can't always trust those lawyers. Thanks to Paul for moderating such a great site!

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