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Published On: Sat, Sep 1st, 2012

President Obama targets amendment to stop Super Pacs in live online chat

President Barack Obama says the nation should consider mobilizing behind a constitutional amendment process to overturn the Supreme Court ruling that loosened restrictions on money in politics.

In a chat with the web community Reddit,a question-and-answer session so popular it briefly crashed the site, President Obama suggested a constitutional amendment to overturn the Supreme Court decision in Citizens United vs. the FEC.

Money has always been a factor in politics, but we are seeing something new in the no-holds barred flow of seven and eight figure checks, most undisclosed, into super-PACs; they fundamentally threaten to overwhelm the political process over the long run and drown out the voices of ordinary citizens. We need to start with passing the Disclose Act that is already written and been sponsored in Congress – to at least force disclosure of who is giving to who. We should also pass legislation prohibiting the bundling of campaign contributions from lobbyists. Over the longer term, I think we need to seriously consider mobilizing a constitutional amendment process to overturn Citizens United (assuming the Supreme Court doesn’t revisit it). Even if the amendment process falls short, it can shine a spotlight of the super-PAC phenomenon and help apply pressure for change.

While Obama’s campaign manager signaled earlier this year that the president was open to such a move, a direct stamp of approval from the man himself carries a lot more weight.

Liberal-leaning activist groups have been pushing for an amendment to overturn the decision, which paved the way for super PACs that can raise and spend unlimited funds.

President Obama in live reddit chat

From Reddit:

Key figures from the IAMA:

  • 2,987,307 pageviews on the day of
  • 5,280,441 pageviews so far in total (as of 9 AM PT 8/31 — not accounting for stats lag).

In the first five minutes, there were 37 comments. By the ten minute mark, redditors had made 278 comments. Within half an hour that number jumped to 5,266 and was over 10,000 by the end of the first hour.

The only link in recorded history to have surpassed the front page. 
At any given time, the front page of reddit (http://www.reddit.com) has around 15-20% of active visitors. An extremely popular submission may have 2-5% of visitors at any given time. In the recorded history of reddit, we’ve never had one single submission get more visitors than the front page at any given time, until the Obama IAMA. The Obama IAMA received over 30% of all visitors to reddit at its peak.

 /u/PresidentObama 
The President’s account was given 5 years, 9 months of reddit gold! (Suppose someone will have to figure out how to declare virtual gifts if they haven’t already).

PresidentObama‘s user page received 428,004 pageviews on the day of the IAMA.

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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