Democracy

Report | Budget, Democracy

Representation Without Taxation

Marking the second anniversary of the Supreme Court’s decision in the Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission case, this report takes a hard look at the lobbying activities of profitable Fortune 500 companies that exploit loopholes and distort the tax code to avoid billions of dollars in taxes.

News Release | Budget, Democracy

Thirty Fortune 500 Companies Paid More to Lobby Congress than they Did in Federal Income Taxes

With the second anniversary approaching of the Supreme Court’s decision in the Citizens United case – which opened the floodgates to corporate spending on elections – Maryland PIRG and Citizens for Tax Justice reveal 30 corporations that spent more to lobby Congress than they did in taxes.

News Release | Democracy

The DISCLOSE Act is a Critical First Step to Prevent a Corporate Takeover of Democracy

Thursday morning, the long-awaited Schumer-Van Hollen legislation was introduced with bi-partisan support as a response to the Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission.

Fast track the citizens united bill

Not so long ago, "Citizens United vs. the Federal Elections Commission" was just a pending obscure decision facing the Supreme Court.

But on January 21, with a cataclysmic ruling, what was once only on the minds of a few fretting campaign finance reformers made its way to America's front pages.

Strong Campaign Finance Reform

Poll: 80% of Americans favor giving shareholders a say in corporate political spending in the wake of Citizens United.

Media Hit | Democracy

Ruling: Influence peddling or free speech?

Republicans are celebrating the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to relax campaign-finance laws regulating corporations and labor unions, while Democrats say Thursday's decision will allow companies to buy and sell elections.

Voting and Democracy Protections

Money plays far too great a role in American elections, from the municipal level all the way up to the presidency.  Large contributions from a limited number of wealthy interests unduly influence who wins elections and reduce the role of citizen voters in our democracy. Maryland PIRG worked to protect voting rights and increase transparency.

Federal consumer protection bill draws praise, wariness

Federal legislation intended to add new protections for financial products is drawing some opposition from banks and financial planners, but support from consumer advocates who say the safeguards are needed.

Report | Maryland PIRG | Democracy

Honest Enforcement

Some argue that last year’s scandals, which led to the conviction of two congressmen and several top aides, are evidence that ethics enforcement in Congress works. The actual facts leading up to the convictions, however, are more an indictment of the current process than a testament to its success.

Fraud, Failure No Deterrent to Federal Contract Awards

Companies with immediate past histories of shoddy work and fraudulent practices still receive billions of dollars in federal contracts, according to a new report by the Maryland PIRG Foundation.

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