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Cicilline Won’t Take Pledge on Campaign Finance Reform

Friday, September 03, 2010

 

Congressional candidate David Cicilline won’t take a MoveOn.org pledge on campaign finance reform—contrary to a statement he made at a debate hosted by ABC 6 and the League of Women Voters on Tuesday.

Cicilline is not listed as one of the signatories online and an official with MoveOn.org confirmed he had not signed it. Campaign manager Eric Hyers said Cicilline has been referring to something else and backs even stricter campaign finance reform measures than MoveOn.org

The candidates who sign the MoveOn.org pledge agree to support the Fair Elections Now Act, the overturning of Citizens United—the Supreme Court decision that allows corporations to spend unlimited funds in elections, and banning those in government service from becoming lobbyists for five years, and vice versa.

Cicilline Challenged During Debate

During the ABC 6 debate, David Segal, who has signed the pledge, challenged Cicilline on the issue—until he stated that he had signed the pledge.

“Will you sign the pledge that MoveOn has put forth that asks candidates to assert that they will support the Fair Elections Now Act and reform the Citizens United?” Segal asked.

Cicilline responded, “I've already done that.”

“You’ve already signed the pledge?” Segal said

 “Yes,” Cicilline replied.

Hyers said Cicilline was not actually referring to the MoveOn.org pledge. “David was referring to his support for the Fair Elections Now Act, not the MoveOn.org pledge,” Hyers said.  “We believe strongly there needs to be a lifetime ban on members of Congress serving as lobbyists whereas the pledge allows them to be a lobbyist after a six-year period.”

Segal Campaign Says Cicilline ‘Lied’

The Segal campaign, on the other hand, didn’t think there had been any miscommunication at all.

“Tuesday at the debate, David Segal asked David Cicilline a direct yes-no question: will he sign the Move On pledge?  David Segal was referring to a pledge that Move On is circulating nationwide, one that asks candidates for Congress to pledge to support the Fair Elections Now Act and to work to undo the Citizens United decision, two steps towards election reform that would start to reign in the overwhelming power corporations have over our government,” said Segal campaign manager Rachel Miller. “Last night on television, David Cicilline asserted that he already signed the pledge. We have since find out that Cicilline lied.”

Miller added: “Cicilline clearly understands that Rhode Island voters care deeply about the connections between money and politics, yet he was willing to lie about signing a simple pledge. This leads me to ask, if Cicilline is willing to lie about a pledge why should Rhode Islanders believe he's telling the truth when he says he will work to enact electoral reform?”

 

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