At a Monday rally in Madison, Wisconsin, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton mourned the role of big money and Super PACs in politics, although she has benefitted heavily from them.
Clinton decried the Supreme Court decision Citizens United, which ruled that independent political expenditures could not be regulated by the federal government due to the First Amendment.
“Big surprise, a flood of money from rich people, corporations, special interests has poured into our politics. Citizens United opened the door to the creation of Super PACs and between the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections, spending by outside groups tripled,” Clinton said.
Clinton has seen support from multiple Super PACs, mainly from Priorities USA, in the 2016 election cycle alone, according to the Sunlight Foundation. OpenSecrets reports that Priorities USA received $7 million from well known liberal financier George Soros alone while Haim and Cheryl Saban have donated $5 million to it.
Clinton’s close ties to Wall Street have also been a point of contention in the campaign as much of her campaign’s financial support comes from large Wall Street firms. She has given many paid speeches to Wall Street firms.
Goldman Sachs infamously gave her $675,000 to give just three speeches. There have been demands from Republicans and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) for her to release the transcripts from those speeches.
Sanders has repeatedly decried Super PACs and big money in politics, and he does not have a Super PAC aligned with him.
One of the reasons Clinton claims to want big money out of politics was because she was being criticized.
“People forget this, but the Citizens United case actually began with yet another right-wing attack on me,” Clinton said. “It grew out of a Wisconsin case about whether corporations can run issue ads, so called ‘issue ads,’ close to an election. So we all have a personal stake in this.”