“WE THE PEOPLE ACT” BALLOT MEASURE IN NORTH CAROLINA
BE IT ENACTED BY THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA:
Sec. 1. INTENT
This act declares that the people of North Carolina support amending The Constitution of the United States consistent with the following principles:
A. Artificial Entities Such as Corporations Do Not Have Constitutional Rights
- The rights protected by the Constitution of the United States are the rights of natural persons only.
- Artificial entities established by the laws of any State, the United States, or any foreign state shall have no rights under this Constitution and are subject to regulation by the People, through Federal, State, or local law.
- The privileges of artificial entities shall be determined by the People, through Federal, State, or local law and shall not be construed to be inherent or inalienable.
B. Money is Not Free Speech
- Federal, State, and local government shall regulate, limit or prohibit contributions and expenditures, including a candidate’s own contributions and expenditures, to ensure that all citizens, regardless of their economic status, have access to the political process, and that no person gains, as a result of their money, substantially more access or ability to influence in any way the election of any candidate for public office or any ballot measure.
- Federal, State, and local government shall require that any permissible contributions and expenditures be publicly disclosed.
- The judiciary shall not construe the spending of money to influence elections to be speech under the First Amendment.
Sec. 2. FINDINGS
1. Article 1, section 2 of the North Carolina state constitution asserts that political power is vested in and derived from the people; all government of right originates from the people, is founded upon their will only, and is instituted solely for the good of the whole.
2. Free and fair elections are essential to self-determination and self-governance as described in The Declaration of Independence and established in The Constitution of the United States.
3. The American people have lost faith in the political process because their voices are not heard and their interests are not represented.
4. The U.S. Constitution makes no mention of corporations or other artificial entities; there are no provisions extending rights to such entities.
5. Corporate participation in the political process often conflicts with the public interest. Unlike human beings, corporations can exist in perpetuity and in many countries at the same time. As a result many invest in campaigns to invalidate or bypass regulatory law intended to protect the public.
6. Money is property; it is not speech. Nowhere in the U.S. Constitution is money equated with speech. Equating the spending of money with free speech gives those with the most money the most speech.
7. Monopolizing public speech neither promotes nor protects free speech. Whenever special interests are able to spend unlimited amounts of money on political speech, candidates and officeholders can be corrupted and intimidated, and the free speech of most citizens is drowned out and denied.
8. Full and prompt disclosure of funding sources is essential to an informed electorate, fair elections, and effective governance. Anonymous contributions and spending for political gain promote dishonesty and corruption. The public must be able to hold funders of political speech accountable when their messages prove false or misleading.
9. Article V of the U.S. Constitution empowers the people and the states to use the amendment process to correct egregious decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court that subvert our representative government.