News / USA

Obama Speaks Out Against Special Interest Ads

President Obama records his weekly address for August 21, 2010
President Obama records his weekly address for August 21, 2010

U.S. President Barack Obama has called on Republicans to end their opposition to a bill that he says would limit the influence of corporations and foreign entities on U.S. elections.

In his weekly address, Mr. Obama said a January Supreme Court decision allows corporations to spend unlimited amounts of money on negative political advertisements without revealing who is behind them.

The president said even foreign-controlled corporations are allowed to do this.  

The Supreme Court overturned a decades-old ruling that said the government could prohibit corporations and unions from paying for campaign ads.  The court ruled such restrictions violated constitutionally-guaranteed free speech rights.

Mr. Obama said the bill he supports would require special-interest ads to reveal who is funding them. He said the legislation would also restrict foreign-controlled corporations and entities from spending money to influence U.S. elections.

The president urged Americans to challenge every elected official who benefits from such ads to defend the practice or join the fight against it.

In the Republicans' weekly address, Congressman Charles Djou said the government should cut spending in order to reduce the need to borrow funds or raise taxes. He said continuing to spend too much will only produce what he called "the same dismal results."

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

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