Money or Merit: What's Electing Our Political Leaders?
Bob Edgar, President and CEO, Common Cause
Jesse Choper, Earl Warren Professor of Public Law, UC Berkeley
Lawrence McQuillan, Director of Business and Economic Studies, Pacific Research Institute
John Diaz, Editorial Page Editor, San Francisco Chronicle - Moderator
Do our political leaders achieve their positions on merit, or are they buying them? After the Supreme Court ruled in January to permit both corporations and unions to promote and finance the campaigns of electoral candidates, many people, including the president, said that big business would now own and control politics. The issue appears to be polarized along party lines. Conservatives contend that prohibiting corporations from financing political campaigns is a violation of the First Amendment, and liberal politicians and policy groups have adamantly protested the ruling for giving equal representative rights to corporations and individuals. Dialogue is critical to fully understanding this thorny issue. Join The Club for a spirited debate on the ramifications, constitutionality and precedent of this landmark ruling.
Location: SF Club Office
Time: 5:30 p.m. networking reception, 6 p.m. program
Cost: MEMBERS FREE, $20 non-members, Free for students (with valid ID)
Also know: Part of the U.S. Constitution in the 21st Century Series, underwritten by the Charles Geschke Family