AP Council

American Promise assembled the first cross-partisan Advisory Council to speak for the 28th amendment. These American leaders represent thoughtful viewpoints from a variety of political, economic, and demographic perspectives.

 

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Doris Kearns Goodwin

Presidential Historian, Pulitzer Prize-winning Author
Concord, MA

“Five years after Citizens United, it is time to accept the historical gravity of our situation. It is time for Americans of all political viewpoints to come together to win the 28th Amendment — and to renew U.S. democracy again.”

 

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Nina Turner

Former Ohio State Senator, Professor of History
Cleveland, OH

“I applaud American Promise for bringing together people of good conscience from all political spectrums to stand up and say that, what we care about as everyday people is in peril if we don’t get concentrated money out of American politics. We can regain power in a representative democracy through The Constitution. I believe that we can do this, because - in our history - every time change has come it is from the grassroots not the grass tops. Down with Citizens United and up with the 28th Amendment!”

 

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John Pudner

Executive Director, Take Back Our Republic
Auburn, AL

"The roar of special interest money has been getting louder for decades, and it's now drowning out the free speech of individual citizens. I'm honored to be working with Jeff and the rest of the American Promise Advisory Council toward a constitutional amendment that will help restore government 'by the people' and giving voters a chance to secure our Constitutional values."

 

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Ben Cohen

Co-founder of Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream and Head Stamper at www.StampStampede.org
Burlington, VT

"Democracy is the triple-deluxe droolworthy idea that the people can govern and be governed in turn, that We the People are the author and the subject of the law. But that idea is under threat from millionaires, billionaires, and big corporations who use their money to buy access and influence in Washington. But we can fight back. That’s why I’m literally stamping money out of politics and teaming up with American Promise to win a 28th Amendment to restore our democracy."

 

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Donnel Baird

Entrepreneur, Founder BlocPower
New York, NY

“We need to strengthen our democracy if we want good jobs with good wages, energy sources that are renewable and affordable, and strong, resilient communities. That means we need to win the 28th Amendment to overturn Citizens United and restore equal citizenship and liberty for all.”

 

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Jim Leach

Fmr. Congressman (R-Iowa); fmr. Chair of the National Endowment For the Humanities
Iowa City, IA

“Citizens United has genetically altered our democratic DNA, pushing American politics in an oligarchic, corporatist direction. The Constitution begins 'We the people' not 'We the corporations.' ”

 

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James Nelson

Justice, Montana Supreme Court (Ret).
Helena, MT

 “The original framers were highly distrustful of the power of corporations. I suspect that the framers would be appalled at Citizens United. We the People—each of us—are only the most recent generation of Americans who have been called upon to defend the framers’ vision of a Constitutional government Of the People, By the People, and For the People. That responsibility is now ours.”

 

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Matt Patsky

CEO, Trillium Asset Management
Boston, MA

 “It did not take 20 years in private industry for me to learn that corporations are not people. This is not to say that people are good and corporations are bad; they are just different. We, the people of Massachusetts, are ready for Congress to propose, and send to the states for ratification, an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that will negate Citizens United and restore the democratic process for all Americans.”

 

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Mike Dukakis

Fmr. Governor of Massachusetts; Democratic Nominee for President
Boston, MA

 “Where in the Constitution does it say that money is speech? The new 'right' of the few to spend unlimited money in our elections imperils our democracy and all of our rights as equal citizens. Americans must come together to win the 28th Amendment to overturn Citizens United and renew the promise of America.”

 

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Kahlil Byrd

CEO, Invest America Fund; entrepreneur; leader of cross-partisan initiatives such as Americans Elect
New York, NY

 “We are entering the most important era of reform in decades. Americans are far ahead of our leaders in embracing the need for change right now. Building support for the 28th Amendment through American Promise is giving regular people a focused and real vehicle to reduce the influence of the corporate and union money that is driving so much of our political system.”

 

Rev. Dr. Katharine Henderson

President, Auburn Theological Seminary
New York, NY

 “The time for hand wringing and anxious complaints is long past. Just as the prophets cried out, it is time for us to support campaign finance overhaul. To that end, ministers, rabbis and nuns, priests, imams, and theologians across the U.S. are joining forces, calling out the dangers of unchecked money in our elections and advocating for large-scale reform.”

 

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Ella McGrail

High School Student
Portsmouth, NH

 "Our country is still waging its long war against inequality in terms of race, gender, sexual orientation, faith, and financial status. Milestones of our progress on these struggles can be seen in the amendments we've made over time to our Constitution. At this moment in history, I think the best step we can take towards a more perfect union is creating an amendment that will put a stop to the corrupting influence of money in politics. Once the money in your wallet no longer has an effect on how well your government represents you, we will have taken another great step towards equality."

 

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Joe Kearns Goodwin

US Army Veteran (Iraq, Afghanistan); businessperson; Executive Director, National Service Now
Boston, MA

 “American Promise is about our equal rights and our equal responsibilities. As citizens, we should be expected to do more than pay taxes and obey the law. All Americans should be given the opportunity to serve so that we learn to move past personal differences to achieve a higher common goal. I’m glad to join Americans who are answering the call to work together to defend democracy against the corruption of concentrated money and power.”

 

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Bob Monks

Executive, Author
Cape Elizabeth, ME

 “If Americans are determined to keep our republic, we have a lot of work to do. We need to join and support the broad-based, non-partisan movement for a constitutional amendment to correct the Supreme Court’s disastrous mistake in Citizens United, and to enable sweeping campaign finance and lobbying reform.”

 

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Jack Doty

Partner
San Francisco, CA

 “It is always people, of course. And those who have garnered wealth often end up controlling outdated resources - and are fearful of the loss of power the recognition of that obsolescence implies. Using that wealth to maintain power often builds oligarchies that inhibit growth and deny the future. Worse, those oligarchies deny the basis of the Great Experiment, American Democracy: the faith in and trust of the voice of each individual. Our democracy is at stake: its loss will be the result of good people doing nothing. What consolation in knowing that there is the 28th Amendment - and American Promise forwarding the process towards its adoption!”

 

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Tamara Piety

Professor of Law
Tulsa, OK

 "The Supreme Court’s creation of First Amendment speech rights for commercial entities imperils public health, safety, and welfare; the reliability of commercial and consumer information; the stability of financial markets; and environmental stability. The 28th Amendment will help shift the balance of power between capital and the people and the people’s ability to legislate for the common good.”

 

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John Coates

Professor
Cambridge, MA

 "The 28th Amendment will reduce pressure on companies to spend money on elections and politics, and allow business leaders to remain focused on growing the economy. They can return to making good products, providing good services, and generating returns for shareholders, and they will have less need to divert resources and dilute strategies in a mutually destructive effort to win a large slice of a fixed governmentally-provided pie. In short, the amendments will be good not only for individual voters, but for America’s best companies as well.”