Tag Archives | Citizens United

Keep Politics Out of the Boardroom

Keep Politics Out of the Boardroom?

The deceptive title of a recent op-ed in the Wall Street Journal would not keep politics out of the boardroom. Instead, the recommendations would deny shareholders the right to request boards disclose those politics, in addition to denying many other long-standing rights. Read the op-ed and weep that such trash gets published in the Journal. This […]

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Nell Minow

Nell Minow: Only Corporate Governance Can Save the World

Nell Minow is one of my heroes. Her 1991 book with Bob Monks, Power and Accountability: Restoring the Balances of Power Between Corporations and Society, helped me give a name and framework to what I thought was the world’s most important overlooked problem — corporate governance. During the last 27 years, I have never met […]

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Center for Political Accountability

Center for Political Accountability: Video Friday

Since 2003, the Center for Political Accountability (CPA) has spearheaded disclosure and accountability in corporate political spending. Corporations are the top political spenders at the state and local level. They are a dominant force in shaping public policy. Next proxy season, I will join the Center for Political Accountability in filing proposals on this important topic. […]

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Ciara Torres-Spelliscy holding Corporate Citizen?

Torres-Spelliscy: Corporate Citizen?

Torres-Spelliscy’s Corporate Citizen? An Argument for the Separation of Corporation and State, analyzes the trail of legal cases that led to the 2010 Supreme Court decision in Citizens United, as corporations won rights originally reserved for citizens. Not only are they winning the rights of real persons, but they are avoiding the responsibilities of citizenship… like paying taxes. […]

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The Handbook of Board Governance - book cover

The Handbook of Board Governance: Part 4

I continue my review of The Handbook of Board Governance: A Comprehensive Guide for Public, Private, and Not-for-Profit Board Member. With the current post, I provide comments on Part 4 of the book, The Rise of Shareholder Accountability. As a shareholder advocate, this is my favorite part of The Handbook of Board Governance. See prior introductory comments and those on Part 1, Part 2 and […]

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Vanguard Voted Against All Political Disclosure Resolutions (2nd from bottom on graph)

Vanguard’s Political Disclosure Vote: Wrong!

Let’s change Vanguard’s political disclosure vote. Our nation’s largest mutual fund voted against all resolutions submitted by shareholders asking for companies to disclose their political spending. Shouldn’t we have the right to know what candidates our investments are supporting? Vanguard’s Political Disclosure Vote Needs Changed Join more than 59,000 American’s who have already petitioned Vanguard to […]

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Dark Money

Video Friday: Where is the SEC on Dark Money?

I think most Americans have a very limited attention span when it comes to investing, the SEC and especially corporate governance. When I came across SECDisclose.org earlier this week, I was delighted with a series of videos they have uploaded on dark money and with their byline: Because the S.E.C. shouldn’t stand for “S-E-C-RET.” In a few paragraphs below lifted […]

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Citizens United and Pay 2 Play

Investors Seek Disclosure of Corporate Lobbying Expenses

Resolutions Filed at 53 Companies Disclosure of corporate lobbying expenses remain top shareholder proposal topics for 2015, as more than 60 investors have filed proposals with more than 50 companies asking for reports that include federal and state lobbying payments, political contributions and/or payments to trade associations used for lobbying and payments to any tax-exempt […]

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Citizens United and Pay 2 Play

Citizens United: Five Years Later

Five years ago today the US Supreme Court held that corporations could spend unlimited  funds on election campaigns in their decision, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. Last night I joined about 100 people a local showing of Pay 2 Play: Democracy’s High Stakes.  I highly recommend it. See the film with a group and […]

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Corporate Political Spending Poll

Corporate Political Spending Disclosure: Strategic Communications Plan

In the absence of mandatory disclosure, companies are increasingly, voluntarily adopting disclosure policies for their corporate political spending – largely in response to pressure from shareholders, investor advocates, the media, political groups and others. In this article, Chuck Nathan suggests that voluntary disclosure may or likely will become the norm – at least among larger companies – within […]

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Brent Fields to Track Support of SEC Petition on Political Spending

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced that Brent J. Fields has been appointed as the agency’s Secretary, who is responsible for overseeing the administrative aspects of Commission meetings, rulemakings, and procedures. Let’s give Mr. Fields a warm welcome with a flood of e-mail supporting the petition to require companies to disclose political spending.  (more…)

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H&R Block logo

H&R Block (HRB): Proxy Vote Score 54

H&R Block $HRB, which provides tax preparation and related services to the general public, is one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their next annual meeting is September 11, 2014. ProxyDemocracy.org had collected the votes of two funds when I checked and voted on 9/7/2014. I also checked the votes of OTPP and CalSTRS. All advance disclosers that I know of […]

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FB

Facebook (FB): Proxy Voting Recommendations

Facebook $FB, is one of the stocks in my portfolio. Their annual meeting is coming up on 5/22/2014. ProxyDemocracy.org had collected the votes of two funds when I checked and voted on 5/19/2014.  I voted with management 0% of the time.  View Proxy Statement. Read Warnings below. (more…)

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‘We the People’ Already Have a Partial Road Map to Fight Citizens United: Stocks and Mutual Funds

Guest Post by Shari Dunn is an attorney and journalist who is also a “True Believer,” Bon Vivant, Raconteur, Creative, Dreamer and Muse.  Never believe that a few caring people can’t change the world. For indeed, that’s all who ever have.  That’s one of Dunn’s favorite quotes from Margaret Mead. In this guest post (originally posted at […]

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SEC Commissioner Wants to Muzzle Shareowners

In a speech to the 26th Annual Corporate Law Institute held at Tulane University Law School on Federal Preemption of State Corporate Governance, SEC commissioner Daniel Gallagher delivered a scathing attack on small investors and proposed radical steps to severely limit democracy in corporate governance. Gallagher opened his attack by stating,  Activist investors and corporate gadflies have used […]

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Political Disclosure and Corporate America

Guest Post from Stephen M. Davis, Ph.D. is associate director of the Harvard Law School Programs on Corporate Governance and Institutional Investors, and a senior fellow at the Program on Corporate Governance. He is also a nonresident senior fellow in governance at the Brookings Institution. From 2007-2012 he was executive director of the Yale School of Management’s Millstein […]

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Video Friday – Corporate Speech: The Role of Corporations in Lobbying and Influencing Policy

Moderator: Jesse Eisinger, reporter at ProPublica, covering Wall Street and finance. Panelists: Martin Redish, NU Law; Robert A. Weinberger, Senior Fellow, Aspen Institute Initiative on Financial Security; former VP Government Relations, H&R Block; Chairman, Center for Responsive Politics; Lynn Stout, Cornell Law; Nell Minow, founder of GMI Ratings and co-founder and editor of the Corporate […]

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Investors Press for Disclosure of Political Spending: Please Vote for Resolutions

Last week, investors announced  filing shareholder resolutions at more than 50 corporations as part of a 2013 proxy season initiative asking companies to annually report their federal and state lobbying, including any payments to trade associations used for lobbying as well as support for tax-exempt organizations that write and endorse model legislation. Take Action: In his […]

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How Mutual Funds Voted on Political Disclosures

As we look back on the 2012 elections one thing is clear, money flowed like water with any barrier that might have contained it removed by Citizens United. Writing for the court in the 5-4 decision, Judge Kennedy opined: With the advent of the Internet, prompt disclosure of expenditures can provide shareholders and citizens with the information needed […]

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A New Strategy to Fight Citizens United

Guest post from Kent Greenfield. Author, ‘The Myth of Choice’; law professor at Boston College. This article is adapted from a more substantial essay in the Fall 2012 issue of Democracy: A Journal of Ideas and appeared previously on Huffington Post, 9/15/2012. We progressives have been in quite a tizzy about Citizens United, especially now that 2012 election cycle is swamped with […]

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End Corporate Demockary

Corporations determine far more than any other institution the air we breathe, the quality of the water we drink, even where we live. Yet they are not accountable to anyone. Those words were on the 1991 cover of Power and Accountability: Restoring the Balances of Power Between Corporations and Society by Robert A.G. Monks and […]

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