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Monday September 1st 2014

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Business for Democracy and ASBC Lead Effort to Overturn Citizens United v. FEC

The Business for Democracy Campaign, which the American Sustainable Business Council is spearheading in partnership with Free Speech for People is tackling the compelling issue of corporate contributions to political campaigns.

The U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. FEC decision on January 21, 2010 allows corporations to spend unlimited funds to support or oppose candidates for political office, overturning campaign finance laws in place for decades. The Business for Democracy campaign is an initiative of business leaders and their companies who believe this ruling is in direct conflict with American democratic principles and a serious threat to good government. The campaign supports the four members of the Supreme Court and the 80 percent of Americans who disagree with the decision (Washington Post poll, Feb. 17, 2010).

If you'd like your business to join this effort, you can sign the statement of support here or here.

Crowdfunding Update – LegalizeCrowdfunding.org Launches, Compromise Ideas pushed, Speaking Engagements

Here’s the latest from the guys leading the charge to legalize Crowdfund Investing (CFI) in Washington, DC.

LegalizeCrowdfunding.org goes live.
Already 138 entrepreneurs have registered to create 2,500+ jobs, which will have over $100M in stimulus! Let’s show Washington, DC the power of Crowdfund Investing! If you are an,

1. Entrepreneur: Register to show how many people you need for your business (eg: jobs you will create) and the economic impact it will have.

2. Investor: Register to show the impact your dollars will have stimulating our economy.

3. Crowdfunding Supporter: Send an email to your Legislators, Tweet and Post about the site!

Endorse Crowdfund Investing! SBE Council plans to send this group letter to U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) in the coming week. If you would like to sign onto the letter and add your name to the growing list of groups representing small business owners and entrepreneurs that are urging the U.S. Senate to take action, please send your name, affiliation and email contact information to SBE Council at [email protected]

Status of Legislation

1. The Good: As it stands we have 3 bills before Congress. HR 2930 passed the House with an overwhelming 96% approval – Yes that’s true bipartisan support. President Obama came out and endorsed the Bill with a Statement of Administrative policy and also included our framework in the Startup America Legislative Agenda. Things have slowed down in the Senate but to help move things along we went back to Washington and presented them with some Commonsense Consensus ideas that pull the best of the 3 bills into one.

2. The Bad: NASAA’s opposition to crowdfunding is also in opposition to the needs of our economy, entrepreneurship and jobs. NASAA argues that they are best suited to regulate simple, transparent markets for businesses on Crowdfunding Intermediaries. This would create 50 different markets for Crowdfunding, rendering Crowdfund Investing dead on arrival. This is part of the reason it is so hard for small businesses to raise money today; different bureaucratic, costly rules for each states. Since CFI is based on community financing, we believe the crowd can do a better, faster, cheaper and more efficient job of determining which ideas, if any, should be funded and with how many dollars. It is that simple. Leave the heavy-handed, traditional regulation and oversight for the larger businesses that can access traditional capital. We advocate state regulation preemption, while preserving the enforcement power of the states to pursue fraud when it occurs.

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