Only 21% Say U.S. Government Has Consent of the Governed

It’s not big government per se than people are angry about. It’s big government in cahoots with big business. This new poll is well worth reading.

Only 21% Say U.S. Government Has Consent of the Governed
Thursday, February 18, 2010

The founding document of the United States, the Declaration of Independence, states that governments derive “their just powers from the consent of the governed.” Today, however, just 21% of voters nationwide believe that the federal government enjoys the consent of the governed.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 61% disagree and say the government does not have the necessary consent. Eighteen percent (18%) of voters are not sure.

However, 63% of the Political Class think the government has the consent of the governed, but only six percent (6%) of those with Mainstream views agree.

Seventy-one percent (71%) of all voters now view the federal government as a special interest group, and 70% believe that the government and big business typically work together in ways that hurt consumers and investors.

That helps explain why 75% of voters are angry at the policies of the federal government, and 63% say it would be better for the country if most members of Congress are defeated this November. Just 27% believe their own representative in Congress is the best person for the job.

Among voters under 40, 25% believe government has the consent of the governed. That compares to 19% of those ages 50 to 64 and 16% of the nation’s senior citizens.

Those who earn more than $100,000 a year are more narrowly divided on the question, but those with lower incomes overwhelming reject the notion that today’s government has the consent from which to derive its just authority. Those with the lowest incomes are the most skeptical.

Seventy-eight percent (78%) of Republicans say the government does not have the consent of the governed, and that view is shared by 65% of voters not affiliated with either of the major parties. A plurality of Democrats (44%) agrees, but 32% of those in President Obama’s party believe the government has the necessary consent.
From an ideological perspective, most moderate and conservative voters say the government lacks the consent of the governed. Liberals are evenly divided.

In his new book, In Search of Self-Governance, Scott Rasmussen observes that the American people are “united in the belief that our political system is broken, that politicians are corrupt, and that neither major political party has the answers.” He adds that “the gap between Americans who want to govern themselves and the politicians who want to rule over them may be as big today as the gap between the colonies and England during the 18th century.”

The book has earned positive reviews from Larry Sabato, Pat Caddell, Bill Kristol, Joe Trippi and others. In Search of Self-Governance is available from Rasmussen Reports and at

Sixty percent (60%) of voters think that neither Republican political leaders nor Democratic political leaders have a good understanding of what is needed today.

Thirty-five percent (35%) say Republicans and Democrats are so much alike that an entirely new political party is needed to represent the American people.

Nearly half of all voters believe that people randomly selected from the phone book could do as good a job as the current Congress.


Organizational Responses to Citizens United decision

Adopted by the Northeast Ohio American Friends Service Committee, February 8, 2010

A fundamental Friends belief is that every person has inherent worth and dignity regardless of religion, race, nationality, ethnicity, income, gender, physical ability or sexual orientation. Humans have the capacity for emotion, imagination, awareness, self-reflection, empathy, aspirations, reason, creativity, responsibility and more. Every human being possesses inalienable rights simply by being human. Government laws and constitutions have affirmed many of these rights.

Corporations are not human and possess no human traits. They have no inalienable rights. They are entities, chartered by the State, with a purpose to serve the public by providing goods and/or services. They are nothing more than a set of legal documents much like deeds, wills and other warrants.

Historically, corporations were created to be subordinate to human persons. The State can revoke a corporate charter if it does not follow its terms.

Despite the recent Supreme Court decision, Citizens United vs FEC, granting corporations greater political free speech powers to contribute to political campaigns and despite past Supreme Court decisions granting corporations the same legal status as living, breathing human beings, rights reserved exclusively for human beings under the Bill of Rights and other sections of the US Constitution should not apply to corporations.

Corporations are not persons. Equating the two is not only a perversion of laws and constitutions but a usurpation of self-governance and perversion of life itself.

The Northeast Ohio American Friends Service Committee is a Quaker-based social action organization that educates, advocates and organizes on justice, peace and self-governance.



Campaign to Legalize Democracy / Move to Amend

Alliance for Democracy

Reclaim Democracy

Progressive Democrats of America

Common Cause

League of Women Voters of the United States

Green Party of the United States

Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund

Public Citizen

Brennan Center for Justice

People for the American Way

Reactions to Citizens United Decision

Below are some of the best and relevant articles, videos, radio interviews (and, of course, to maintain sanity) satire I’ve come across on the Supreme Court ruling, Citizens United vs FEC expanding political free speech powers of corporations. In the next few days, I’ll forward a list of statements from organizations on the decision.

ACTION: Read, watch and listen to what interests you, share the list with others, and gather several human persons (corporate persons are not permitted!) together to discuss the issue. Go to for action ideas. If ambitious, plan a public program to let others know. For help planning an action, contact me at 330-928-2301 or

Also sign up on the Move to Amend Facebook page. <



The new American crisis

Op Ed by Ben Manski February 8, 2010

Corporations have evidence to support their personhood

(a funny letter to editor) February 8, 2010

Amend Constitution, restore our citizenship

by Ben Manski & Lisa Graves Sunday, February 7, 2010

Senator Statements on Citizens United decision (including Sherrod Brown)

Today’s Judiciary Committee Hearing On Citizens United

by Bill Egnor Wednesday February 3, 2010

Pelosi Taps Task Force To Counter Supreme Court’s Citizens United Ruling

February 3, 2010

John Kerry: Amend The Constitution In Response To Citizens United Decision

February 2, 2010

Majority of Respondents Support Legislation That Would Regulate How Corporations Spend Money on Political Advertising

Feb 1, 2010

Citizens United Fallout Already Being Felt

An Ongoing Case Points Up Just How Dramatically The Court’s Ruling Has Changed Judicial Thinking

by Eliza Newlin Carney February 1, 2010

Thank You Supreme Court

by Greg Coleridge January 29, 2010

Editorial Notebook: Hanging a ‘For Sale’ Sign Over the Judiciary


Published: January 29, 2010

The Supreme Coup

by Jim Hightower 27 January 2010

Commentary: Citizens United vs. FEC is an egregious exercise of judicial activism

by Thomas Mann January 26, 2010

Editorial: How Will the Citizens United Decision Affect Sustainable Business?

by Steve Puma January 26, 2010

Move to Amend radio interview of Ben Manski

Wisconsin Radio Network, January 25, 2010

Democracy in America Is a Useful Fiction

by Chris Hedges January 25, 2010

Supreme Corp (Video)

John Oliver celebrates the Supreme Court decision to finally award corporations their long-denied rights.

Monday, January 25, 2010

The Supreme Court’s Ruling: What Would Milton Friedman Say?

by Justin Fox January 25, 2010 |

Supreme Court ruling calls for a populist revolt

by E.J. Dionne Jr.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Money Grubbers: The Supreme Court kills campaign finance reform.

By Richard L. Hasen January 21, 2010 <

Are politicians failing our lobbyists?

The Onion (humor)

Murray Hill Incorporated is Running for Congress

Corporations are people too! (satire…or is it!?)

Challenges to Citizens United begin

Proposed changes in Constitution

by Lyle Denniston Sunday, January 24, 2010

Court’s campaign finance decision a case of shoddy scholarship

by Ruth Marcus

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Keith Olbermann on “Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission”

January 22, 2010

Activists push to abolish ‘corporate personhood’ in wake of Supreme Court decision

January 22, 2010 (radio interview of David Cobb, Ben Manski and George Friday of Move to Amend)

Editorial: The Court’s Blow to Democracy

Published: January 21, 2010

The Pinocchio Project: Watching as the Supreme Court turns a corporation into a real live boy

By Dahlia Lithwick January 21, 2010

The Anatole France First Amendment of Citizens United

by Brenda Wright, Director of Democracy Program, Demos January 21 2010

Whose Rights?

A new Supreme Court decision promotes corporate rights at the expense of the rights of citizens. What happens when the legal structure itself stands in the way of democracy?

by Thomas Linzey, Mari Margil January 21, 2010

The Word – Let Freedom Ka-Ching (video)

Colbert Nation September 15, 2009—let-freedom-ka-ching