AUBURN, AL- Alabama State Rep. Micky Hammon (R-Decatur), the former House Majority Leader, plead guilty to mail fraud. The lawmaker, who took the role of Majority Leader when Republicans took control of the legislature in 2010, became the 4th Alabama elected official to be convicted of corruption charges since 2014. U.S. Attorney Louis Franklin announced the plea, saying: “Self-dealing by elected officials erodes society's confidence in its governmental institutions. Self-dealing is precisely what occurred here. Those who donated to Representative Hammon's campaign expected that the campaign would use those resources lawfully and foster an informative public debate. Instead, Representative Hammon [...]
“This is something the voters should be concerned about. Money that is personally benefiting you is more of a concern and can be a more powerful force pulling you into a decision on related issues than campaign funding.” To read the story in its entirety click here.
A fundamental belief of our organization is that solving the money in politics problem is the closest thing to a silver bullet to restoring real democracy and ushering in good policy. While we are a conservative organization, one of the nation’s top Democrat strategists agrees. Atlanta-based strategist and former Obama operative Tharon Johnson recently wrote an article lamenting the fact that so many campaign result in the re-election of the incumbent and the overwhelming majority of open seats having only one candidate on the ballot. One of the chief reasons cited by Johnson is the money advantage of incumbents, who [...]
The Federal Election Commission has fined Boston-based Suffolk Construction Co., a federal government contractor, for making illegal contributions to a pro-Hillary Clinton super PAC, according to a letter from the agency. The $34,000 settlement between the FEC and Suffolk appears to mark the FEC's first penalty against a government contractor for illegally contributing money to a super PAC — a kind of political group that may raise unlimited amounts of money from corporations and unions. Click HERE to read more from The Center for Public Integrity.
"With everything else on your desk right now, why care about campaign finance reform?" "Because it’s not just about “campaign finance.” It’s about the future workability of our democracy. Special interest money in politics completely distorts not just our system of government – but also our economy and, increasingly, our culture and sense of community. ‘Dark’ money skews the ability of small and mid-sized companies to have their voices heard." To read John's Op-Ed in its entirety click here
Download the corresponding presentation HERE.
John Pudner talked with Tim Draper, Silicon Valley innovator, Venture Capitalist and Government reformer, prior to presenting the People Powered Playbook to investors and executives from Microsoft, Google and a host of Silicon Valley companies. Take Back was selected to present at Draper's 3rd annual Civic & Gov Tech Showcase.
One of the only things that unites Americans is agreement that our republic is broken, and we need to take it back. For years I tried to do this from a political, partisan perspective — winning low-budget campaigns to enable Republicans to take over the Virginia legislature in the 1990s, then the Alabama legislature a decade later — with a massive effort to win over the faith-based vote for Bush-Cheney 2000. My political efforts culminated when I launched Dave Brat’s upset of Majority Leader Eric Cantor — which put a great elected official in office but also made me realize [...]
Weekly Standard senior writer Tony Mecia summarized key aspects of the www.takeback.org agenda in the Washington Examiner, a top news source for Capitol Hill: John Pudner, executive director of Take Back Our Republic, a conservative group advocating for campaign finance reform, says lobbying combined with campaign cash creates a system that hurts taxpayers. "Stopping the revolving door is important, but also realizing that somebody is trading millions in lobbying and campaign contributions for billions in taxpayer money — that's a big problem for Americans," he said. For starters, he would like to see more public disclosure by lobbyists, campaign contributors and [...]
Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI 8th District) and Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA 17th District) are clear about one thing: they don’t agree on much. Aside from being first term congressmen and among the youngest members of the body (Gallagher is 33 and Khanna is 40), there are few similarities. Beyond party, Gallagher is a former Marine from dairy-country. Khanna taught economics in the Silicon Valley. Yet, they both are coming together to promote systematic reform. The two recently elected leaders wrote an op-ed calling for a shared reform agenda. In it, they write: “Whether in Cupertino or Green Bay, we have [...]