Anniversary of Citizens United decision observed with protest rally

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

To mark the third anniversary of the Citizens United decision, nonprofits and community groups held a rally at the federal courthouse in downtown Indianapolis Friday.

About 50 people, holding signs and American flags, listened to speeches decrying the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2010 decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission which removed limitations on corporation spending to support or defeat a candidate or issue.

A handful of speakers from labor, health care and environmental advocacy organizations denounced corporate influence on elected officials and public policy. They charged big business was spending money to manipulate public opinion and to support candidates sympathetic to the business agenda.

“Let’s get big money out of politics and take back the Statehouse,” Kerwin Olson, executive director of Citizens Action Coalition, said to the crowd.  

The rally, which lasted was about an hour, took place at the southeast corner of the Birch Bayh Federal Building and U.S. Courthouse. It was part of the national Occupy the Courts movement which will hold about 250 similar rallies across the country to protest the Citizens United decision.

Members of the Move To Amend – South Central Indiana group traveled from Bloomington to attend the event. James Allison of South Central said the purpose of the demonstration was to make the public aware of the issues surrounding the Supreme Court decision and to promote an amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

The national Move To Amend organization is pushing for an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would overturn Citizens United by stating corporations are not people and money is not speech.

During the speeches, the crowd attending the rally was mostly silent and few people walking by the courthouse stopped to listen. One passerby inquired what was happening. When one of the demonstrators told him the gathering was to protest Citizens United and unlimited corporate spending, the passerby muttered, “oooooooh,” and walked away.

Julia Vaugh, policy director of Common Cause Indiana, asked the crowd to lobby the Indianapolis City-County Council to adopt a resolution supporting Move To Amend’s constitutional amendment.

More and more people are paying attention, she said, because Citizens United impacts the issues people care about.



Post a comment to this story

We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in Indiana Lawyer editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
Subscribe to Indiana Lawyer
  1. I think the cops are doing a great job locking up criminals. The Murder rates in the inner cities are skyrocketing and you think that too any people are being incarcerated. Maybe we need to lock up more of them. We have the ACLU, BLM, NAACP, Civil right Division of the DOJ, the innocent Project etc. We have court system with an appeal process that can go on for years, with attorneys supplied by the government. I'm confused as to how that translates into the idea that the defendants are not being represented properly. Maybe the attorneys need to do more Pro-Bono work

  2. We do not have 10% of our population (which would mean about 32 million) incarcerated. It's closer to 2%.

  3. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  4. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  5. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.