A letter from Marianne

Dear Friends,

I am running for Congress because I believe America has gone off the democratic rails. A toxic brew of shrinking civil liberties, expanded corporate influence and domestic surveillance is poisoning our democracy.

We are currently in the process of dismantling the most basic social contract between the American people and our government, as "a government of the people, by the people, and for the people" has transitioned before our eyes into " a government of a few of the people, by a few of the people, and for a few of the people." A purpose of American progress is to expand the democratic franchise, not constrict it. Yet today, that franchise is being narrowed for everyone. The American people now need to defend our country against a hostile takeover by multi-national corporate interests.

That's the bad news, but there is good news as well: we can change this!

But we must do so quickly, for the trajectory of corporatism is already wreaking havoc on our environment, our economy and even our food supply. When banks, oil companies, chemical companies, health insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, food companies, military manufacturers and prison builders are able to influence our lawmakers so disproportionately to the influence wielded by average citizens, we have a problem. Let us not be the first generation to wimp out on the work necessary to protect and foster our democracy.

Politics isn't something that only a few people should relate to. There should be no "political class" or "political elite" in America. In the words of President Eisenhower, "politics should be the part time profession of every American." The fact that it has in some ways become a spectator sport is unhealthy for our democracy, and I hope you will join with me in changing that. Let's all of us -- not just those of us "interested in politics" -- now awaken to both the perils and opportunities of this time, and the responsibility of each of us to be good stewards of our democracy.

A stale, inside-the-box conversation is inadequate to the challenges that we face now. Other candidates in the race will offer their ideas in this election as well, of course. But while the political status quo addresses the symptoms of our deeper problems, it's time to address the disease itself. Treating the effects of a problem is not the same as treating its cause.

The undue influence of money on our politics is the issue underlying all other issues, and we need a national movement supporting a Constitutional Amendment outlawing the undue influence of money on our politics. If elected, I will work with those in and outside Congress who are working on this already-- for I feel, as many people do, that getting money out of politics is the greatest moral challenge of our generation.

Thank you for visiting my site, and I hope you will get involved in the campaign. Please sign up for email updates, attend our upcoming events, become a volunteer, spread the word to your friends, and donate what you can to support a campaign that is doing all we can do to provide a genuine alternative to the political status quo. This is not simply a good idea. I believe that it is critical.

Please join us.

All my best,

Marianne