In an email entitled "Attacking Our Values," Chris Van Hollen - who raised more than $8.2 million in the primary mostly from K Street lobbyists - is complaining about a Citizens United backed SuperPAC hosting a big fundraiser for Republican Kathy Szeliga.
I agree that Citizens United needs to be reversed, as does the whole line of court cases that treats money as speech and corporations as humans, but Van Hollen doesn’t have a lot of room to talk when it comes to campaign donors. What do his donors say about his values?
According to Open Secrets, which tracks donations, Van Hollen is getting most of his funding from K Street firms that represent big banks, developers and a host of big business interests. His top contributor, the innocuous sounding VoteSane PAC, made up of big developers and financial services, has made its two biggest donations to the Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee and the Republican Congressional Campaign Committee. Why is a PAC that makes big donations to Republicans funding Van Hollen?
Van Hollen's next contributor is typical of many of his donors, the law firm of Arnold and Porter, one of the largest big business firms in DC. It represents mega-corporations including the big banks and financial services, chemicals and pesticides, oil, gas and nuclear, pharmaceuticals and insurance as well as military contractors. Their lobbyists ensure that corrupt crony capitalism continues in Washington, DC. Will Van Hollen represent his donors or the people of Maryland?
Amazingly, the Van Hollen campaign is calling themselves "people powered" (did they steal our slogan?) when the facts show a more accurate description would be "corporate powered."
My campaign is truly a people powered campaign. I refuse to take funds from K Street lobby groups, big developers, the Citizens United PAC or any corporations. I value you and am running to represent your interests in Congress.
My solutions campaign is putting forward ideas that are in the interests of the people and protection of the planet, which almost always conflict with big business interests.
I need your support and involvement! Volunteer here. My campaign is phone banking, going to public events and holding house parties. Please join us in this work. You can sign up or write to me at Flowers4Senate@gmail.com to find out what you can do to help.
Let’s make people power bloom in Maryland!