Former congressman and one-time Louisiana Gov. Buddy Roemer, fresh off a failed presidential campaign, will testify before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill Tuesday. Joined by Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig, Roemer will speak during a hearing — “Taking Back Our Democracy: Responding to Citizens United and the Rise of Super PACs” — designed to underscore the corrupting influence of special-interest money in American electoral politics, specifically the U.S. Supreme Court’s “Citizens United” ruling that opened the floodgate for unlimited spending by corporations and political action committees.
That was a central theme of Roemer’s campaign first to secure the Republican presidential nomination — he was blocked from participating in any of the televised debates and never pulled more than a couple of percentage points in polls during the primary season — and later as he attempted to become the nominee for a bipartisan online political movement called Americans Elect.
Roemer previews his Capitol Hill testimony in an email to supporters:
I will be explaining to Congress that special interest money has paralyzed our nation. I will also tell them that WE are making a change and will not tolerate the status quo. I will explain that a group of us have started The Reform Project, a nonprofit organization (with full disclosure) designed to be engaged in the debate, to foster action and reform, and to stand with those attacked by the special interest addicted, status quo gridlockers.
Nothing is wrong with America that we cannot correct, strengthen and re-build. We must do it together.