Take Action. Demand Transparency.


 

Tell the SEC: Require Corporations to Disclose Political Spending

Big Business is secretly funneling millions of dollars into our political system.
Take action to protect democracy!

 

Derail the Trans-Pacific Partnership

TPP negotiations continue with the public locked out and details held in tight secrecy.
Urge U.S. Trade representative Ron Kirk to release the draft texts.

 

Tell Congress to Pass the DISCLOSE Act

The American public should know who is funding elections.
Email your members of Congress and encourage them to support the DISCLOSE Act (H.R. 4010).

Transparency in Government and Campaign Finance Reform

From ensuring details of campaign donations and political spending are revealed, to shining a light on the ties between lobbyists and lawmakers, Public Citizen pushes to ensure we have as open and honest a government as possible.

Campaign Finance Reform


One of the most important ways to determine who is influencing lawmakers is to determine who is giving them money. A constant battle is being waged between people who want their contributions to politicians kept hidden and those who believe that voters have a right to know who is giving how much to whom. Public Citizen fights for transparency of political spending, particularly by corporations and the wealthy.

The SEC Needs to Demand Disclosure of Political Spending


  • Read Public Citizen’s concerns on just how hard new nominees for the SEC and the CFPB will push for demanding disclosure of political spending.

The People Want to Know


A blog post about the Senate's vote on the DISCLOSE Act and what it could mean for the future of election spending.


Government Reform


Congressional Ethics



Lobbying Disclosure & Reform


  • Detailed description of one of two statutes that regulates the disclosure of lobbying activity by foreign principals and foreign agents.

IRS Rules Relating to Nonprofit Political Activity


Public Citizen, reform groups and Rep. Van Hollen sued the IRS for proper regulations of 501(c)(4) organizations abusing their tax-exempt status to make secret political donations.

Legislation for Accountability and Transparency


  • Public Citizen applauds ‘Truth in Settlements Act,’ which calls for greater disclosure by Justice Department in major settlements.

National Security Agency Transparency


Coalition letter asks the NSA and the USTR to disclose whether any U.S. groups or individuals aiming to influence trade policy are under surveillance.

Regulation Transparency


Read Public Citizen’s demand for a transparent and efficient OIRA, the federal agency that scrutinizes new regulations.

White House for Sale


This useful online resource for following campaign bundlers by election year, candidate, bundler and state.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce


Public Citizen's U.S. Chamber Watch promotes transparency and accountability by shedding light on the the largest private interest lobbyist in America, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

  • Check out a Public Citizen study that finds the US Chamber of Commerce lacking nearly any transparency.

Influence-Peddling Laws


Several federal laws and regulations either restrict lobbyists’ activities or mandate disclosure of their activities. Some of the laws, such as the Lobbying Disclosure Act, are written specifically for lobbyists. Others, such as the House and Senate rules on contributions to legal defense funds, include provisions that affect lobbyists.

Learn more.

Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge (STOCK) Act Materials


Here you'll find extensive materials specific to this legislation, which prohibits members of Congress from trading on insider knowledge.


Finance, Wall Street and Consumer Protections


Forced Arbitration


More than ever, consumers are forced to surrender their rights every time they obtain a product or service, including credit cards, checking accounts, cell phone service and even jobs. Businesses often hide forced arbitration clauses in the fine print, leaving many consumers unaware to the risk they take by signing a contract.


Shareholder Protections


  • Read Public Citizen, consumer groups and shareholders call for Starbucks CEO Schultz to institute corporate policy against political spending.

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Public Citizen, Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation

 

Together, two separate corporate entities called Public Citizen, Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation, Inc., form Public Citizen. Both entities are part of the same overall organization, and this Web site refers to the two organizations collectively as Public Citizen.

Although the work of the two components overlaps, some activities are done by one component and not the other. The primary distinction is with respect to lobbying activity. Public Citizen, Inc., an IRS § 501(c)(4) entity, lobbies Congress to advance Public Citizen’s mission of protecting public health and safety, advancing government transparency, and urging corporate accountability. Public Citizen Foundation, however, is an IRS § 501(c)(3) organization. Accordingly, its ability to engage in lobbying is limited by federal law, but it may receive donations that are tax-deductible by the contributor. Public Citizen Inc. does most of the lobbying activity discussed on the Public Citizen Web site. Public Citizen Foundation performs most of the litigation and education activities discussed on the Web site.

You may make a contribution to Public Citizen, Inc., Public Citizen Foundation, or both. Contributions to both organizations are used to support our public interest work. However, each Public Citizen component will use only the funds contributed directly to it to carry out the activities it conducts as part of Public Citizen’s mission. Only gifts to the Foundation are tax-deductible. Individuals who want to join Public Citizen should make a contribution to Public Citizen, Inc., which will not be tax deductible.

 

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