In the Matter of Staples/Essendant, Inc., File No. 1810180
This, like numerous other issues (climate change, food labeling, gun safety, immigration reform, prison reform, education reform, short-term lending regulation, healthcare reform, banking regulation, opioid regulation) remains a vexing problem primarily due to corporations' ability to curry favor with elected officials. The corrupting influence of money in our political system is undermining our democratic traditions and discouraging Americans from voting and/or running for office. This ominous development may well end our experiment in representative democracy unless we alter this decades-long trend. For the sake of the republic, we must amend the US Constitution to state that corporations are not people (and do not have constitutional rights) and money is not speech (and thus can be regulated by state and/or federal campaign finance laws). Short of accomplishing this, no other reform of significance will be achieved. The moneyed interests will turn any reform to their benefit, often at the expense of the nation as a whole.