End Citizens United has just revealed how vulnerable the US elections are. All were aware of the Russian meddling in the elections. It was only a matter of time before the entire thing unfolded in front of the world. Now it has come to light that a Russian company that is known to have ties to the Kremlin had bought political ads on Facebook. This was done with a view to sway the US presidential election. It is common knowledge that foreign spending is banned in campaigns. But the recent revelation clearly shows that the election laws, along with oversight, as well as enforcement seem to be crumbling. It is clear that Russia made comprehensive and sophisticated efforts in the 2016 US elections, and these seem to have paid off.
Now Special Counsel, namely, Robert Mueller, will be investigating this meddling of Russia. This will help to determine if Trump’s team had played any part in the Russian troll farm. End Citizens United feels that Washington will not be taking steps for preventing such kind of hostile foreign governments from putting in money in the US elections again.
End Citizens United states that the right-wing politicians along with their special interest allies have managed to undermine the campaign finance laws. In this way, there has been Big Money coming in leading to untraceable political spending. Hence these big money donors have managed to tilt things in their favor. It has led to the creation of a rigged system.
A foreign company or even a foreign government being able to buy political ads on Facebook depicts the vulnerability of the US elections. It also shows that the US government is not prepared to do anything about it. It also indicates that besides foreign governments, even corporations or even a single rich individual can get access and move the levers of power in his favor accordingly.
The revelation from End Citizens United is an ad campaign worth $100,000 in 2016 that was from a Russian troll farm. This is just the tip of the iceberg. It may never be known how much money Russia or any other country had spent and interfered in the US elections. All this was made possible due to loopholes in the law along with the gridlock at the enforcement agencies. This allowed individuals and corporations, which may be US-based or otherwise to spend as much as they want without any accountability. This indicates that a hostile country may have spent millions of dollars in the last year US elections alone.
There have been other foreign spending too before the 2016 meddling by Russia. There was a company based in California but owned by Chinese nationals that had contributed $1.3 million to a Super PAC that was supporting Jeb Bush in the 2016 US elections.
Find more about End Citizens United: https://actionnetwork.org/groups/end-citizens-united