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Category Archives: "Political Fundraising"

End Citizens United Raising Funds for Campaign Reform

Posted on 24 May, 2017  in Political Fundraising

In January 2010. the United States Supreme Court came out with a game-chasing decision known as the Citizens United ruling. It’s had a far-reaching effect on political campaigning and elections. By a vote of 5-4, the 9 justices voted to eliminate the ban on how much money corporations and unions can donate to elect or defeat individual candidates. It said in effect both corporations and unions could spend as much money as they wished on individual candidates for political office. However, the ruling does not affect the ban on contribution limits. They still may not contribute more to a candidate’s campaign funds. They may, however, finance their own efforts.

 

Therefore, this paved the way for super PACs. These political action campaigns are allowed to raise and spend as much money from the wealthy, corporations, nonprofits and unions as they can. However, they are independent of the campaign funds raised and run by the specific candidates. The super PACs are required to disclose their donors. The Supreme Court basically held that it was unconstitutional to limit these organizations from spending money to express their opinions. However, they kept a division between expressing opinion and direct support that could result in corruption.

 

In March 2015, a group named End Citizens United PAC formed with the intention to overturn this Supreme Court decision by electing Democrats to public office. It was founded by three online fundraising experts who used to work for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee: Greg Berlin, Jake Lipsett and Charles Starnes. Tiffany Muller is the president of the PAC and its executive director.

 

In their first year, using an aggressive email campaign asking people to contribute to defeat Republicans, they raised $11 million. They raised a total of $25 million in time for the 2016 election.

 

According to USA TODAY, End Citizens United collected over $4 million just in the first three months of 2017. They intend to raise $35 million by the beginning of the mid-term elections next year. That $4 million in the first three months of 2017 came from 100,000 donors. 40% were contributing to End Citizens United for the first time. The average contribution is $12. That indicates the contributors are not wealthy donors. Therefore, they are tapping into the anger Democrats feel regarding President Trump.

 

End Citizens United says its goal is to elect legislators who champion campaign finance reform. The candidates must agree to support an amendment to the constitution to overturn Citizens United. They must also back and vote for campaign finance reform bills.

 

They also say they support only Democrats. They acknowledge some Republicans also oppose campaign finance corruption, but their leadership is blocking reform. They say the Citizens United ruling makes it impossible to pass and implement the Democratic Party’s agenda. The PAC also helped pass a 2015 ballot initiative in Maine that improved that state’s system of public financing for elections.

 

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Andrea McWilliams’ Involvement In Political Fundraising

Posted on 7 April, 2017  in Political Fundraising

Andrea McWilliams is a lobbyist, political fundraiser and a philanthropist who draws her experience from both the private and public sector. While undertaking her duties, the skilled strategist observes the virtues of patience, persuasion and keen attention to details. Andrea’s career started back at the iconic Public Relations Company, Public Strategies, Inc. where, at the age of 21, she was already a chief of staff. Andrea McWilliams and her husband established McWilliams, a full-service firm that offers consultancy services on governmental affairs. The couple combined their talents and experiences to create an alliance that is now a trusted and respected brand internationally.

Andrea McWilliams’ achievements in political fundraising have been featured on renowned channels like FOX News, USA Today, CNN, Wall Street, Newsweek, NPR and BBC. The Texas Women’s Chamber of Commerce distinguished Andrea as “consigliore to the powerful and political.” She also serves as a political commentator. Her profile was featured on Texas Monthly’s “POWER” together with those of the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Speaker of the House. The feature outlined the players of the legislative session. Additionally, Andrea McWilliams is a recipient of numerous awards from several leading organizations, including the Austin Business Journal, the Girl Scouts of Central Texas and Austin Fashion Week.

As a philanthropist and community volunteer, Andrea McWilliams has worked with different organizations like Lyceum, Arthoue, Mexi-Arte Musuem, Heart Gift, Austin Children in Crisis, and the Elizabeth Ann Seton Hospital. She also works with the Long Center’s Notable Women and St. David’s Hospital Toast of the Town Committee. Andrea is also affiliated with Inherit Austin, Susan G Komen Breast Cancer Foundation and Kill Cancer. Andrea has partnered with the Austin Business Journal in a business mentorship program for young women in Central Texas. As a celebrity dancer, Andrea McWilliams participated on Dancing with the Stars fundraising event in support of the Center for Child Protection. Due to her extensive involvement in community activities, Andrea was named severally to the All-Stars of Austin American Fortunate 500 list.

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