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Rebuttal of Bernie Sanders Op-Ed Calling For Supporters to Vote for Clinton

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"You wouldn't listen to me, AND YOU SHOULDN'T" Bernie Sanders advice to his supporters regarding what to do if he ever tried to tell them how to vote.

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On August 5th, Bernie Sanders wrote an op-ed for the LA Times in which he urged his voters to vote for Hillary Clinton. This essay can be found HERE.

Bernie Sanders is factually INCORRECT regarding his main thesis in this editorial. Sanders writes:

"Clinton understands that Citizens United has undermined our democracy. She will nominate justices who are prepared to overturn that Supreme Court decision, which made it possible for billionaires to buy elections."

Citizens United was decided in 2010. However, Martin Gilens and Benjamin Page in an exhaustive 2104 Princeton study which analyzed data drawn between 1981 and 2002, found that:

"The central point that emerges from our research is that economic elites and organized groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on U.S. government policy, while mass-based interest groups and average citizens have little or no independent influence." See HERE . Rephrased, the cumulative effects of the neoliberal policies enacted from the Reagan Administration onward, had ALREADY converted the United States into an oligarchy well BEFORE the Citizens United decision.

In fact, the root precedent for Citizens United, Buckley V. Vallejo, was decided in 1976. In that decision, the Court majority held that money was a form of speech, and so protected under the First Amendment. See HERE. Overturning the Citizen's United precedent would fall far short of breaking the control of money over American politics. That would require an EXPLICIT repudiation by a future Court of the core precedent of Buckley.

The prospects of THAT under either a Trump or a Clinton Presidency are precisely ZERO. This is so because in June 2016, in McDonnell vs. United States, the US Supreme Court UNANIMOUSLY decided to make it nearly impossible to prosecute elected officials for corruption. See HERE for details. The present Court has no will to fundamentally change "business as usual" in American politics. This certainly would not change under a Clinton Presidency.

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Michael P Byron is the author of The Path Through Infinity's Rainbow: Your Guide to Personal Survival and Spiritual Transformation in a World Gone Mad. This book is a manual for taking effective action to deal with the crises of our age including (more...)
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