Mitch McConnell Calls Reid’s Proposal To Amend the Constitution a ‘Gag Order’
On the Senate floor Thursday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) called Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s (D-NV) campaign finance constitutional amendment proposal a “gag order” that will “muzzle” American’s freedom of speech.
McConnell reasoned that freedom of speech and debate is what drives the marketplace of ideas, not laws. But Reid argued that without laws, democracy will succumb to a “hostile takeover” from the wealthy, like the Koch brothers. Reid said, “[T]he flood of special interest money into our American democracy is one of the greatest threats our system of government has ever faced. Let’s keep our elections from becoming speculative ventures for the wealthy and put a stop to the hostile takeover of our democratic system by a couple of billionaire oil barons.”
An excerpt from McConnell’s speech:
It’s a gag order — a gag order on the American people that we represent. Instead of robust, free-wheeling debates about the important issues of the day, we get bizarre monologues about the Democrats’ latest villains. We get silly, shameful attacks on private citizens. So in one sense, it’s fitting that the majority leader announced today he wants to rewrite the Constitution. I mean, at least you have to give them marks for consistency. They are already muzzling our constituents by blocking amendments. Now, they want to muzzle them even more by changing the Bill of Rights. This is completely out of control. Even if the democratic majority doesn’t like our ideas or those of our constituents, the answer isn’t to take away their constitutionally guaranteed right to speak their minds. The answer isn’t — isn’t — to shut down their representatives’ ability to influence legislation through amendment. The answer, my friend, is to come up with better amendments. Come up with better amendments. The answer is to actually convince people in a free and open marketplace of ideas that you’re right. Why are Washington Democrats so afraid of a free and open exchange of ideas? What are they afraid of? Do they have that little faith in the judgment of the people we represent?
This is a copy of the full article provided by the Conservatives at Truth Revolt
A preview of his (Reid’s) speech:
The Kochs’ bid for a hostile takeover of American democracy is calculated to make themselves even richer. Yet the Kochs and their Republican followers in Congress continue to assert that these hundreds of millions of dollars are free speech. For evidence of that, look no further than the Republican Leader, who has flat out said, ‘in our society, spending is speech.’….I urge my colleagues to support this constitutional amendment — to rally behind our democracy. I understand what we Senate Democrats are proposing is no small thing — amending our Constitution is not something we take lightly. But the flood of special interest money into our American democracy is one of the greatest threats our system of government has ever faced. Let’s keep our elections from becoming speculative ventures for the wealthy and put a stop to the hostile takeover of our democratic system by a couple of billionaire oil barons.
The Conservatives at Truth Revolt have the full article on Reid