In a way, it was the conservative lawyer James Bopp who started the political action committee End Citizens United. He was the lawyer who had made the court arguments for his client at the time, Citizens United, which had wanted to air their movie Hillary: The Movie on tv during the presidential primaries for Democrats. A court in Washington DC made up of three judges had basically laughed him out of court. He had made the argument that the movie was no different than what you’d find on any episode of the news show 60 Minutes which the judges found ridiculous.
When the case ended up before the Supreme Court James Bopp also made his arguments before the top judges in the United States. In a 5-4 ruling they agreed with him that blocking the airing of the movie was an infringement on his client’s first amendment rights to free speech. They also ruled that corporations are the same as people in that the government cannot restrict their right to free speech. Additionally, they said that giving money to political causes is free speech.
The inevitable result of this ruling is that corporations and very rich people are now pouring money into politics, giving them far more of a say and voice in the policies that are pursued and the laws that are written than everybody else in the country. Furthermore, James Bopp has continued his mission of eliminating every type of campaign-finance regulation that exists which has been around for decades. He uses his clients in order to create ever wider loopholes and in doing so brings direct benefits to both rich corporations and individuals. One PAC executive, Arn Pearson at Common Cause, said that he is doing the bidding of the Republican party in their years-long battle to destroy campaign-finance laws in the US.
Fighting back against these assaults on campaign-finance laws is End Citizens United. They seek to eventually have a constitutional amendment passed that will roll back the effect of the Citizens United ruling so that sanity is restored to the political system and regular citizens once again have more of a voice and say. This PAC started ahead of the 2016 presidential elections and raised $35 million which was used to support politicians, all Democrats, who support campaign-finance reforms. For the 2018 midterm elections, they are finding even more success and now expect to raise $35 million in support of their cause.
The executives at End Citizens United say that the donations they receive are typically very small and amount to about $12 per person. They also get comments along with the donations. Many of these comments express the idea that elections in the United States have become rigged in favor of what only the rich and powerful want.