Washington » Dozens of current and former corporate executives have a message for Congress -- stop hitting us up for campaign cash.
Roughly 40 executives from companies including Playboy Enterprises, Ben & Jerry's, the Seagram's liquor company, toymaker Hasbro, Delta Air Lines and Men's Wearhouse sent a letter to congressional leaders last week urging them to approve public financing for House and Senate campaigns. They say they are tired of getting fundraising calls from lawmakers -- and fear it will only get worse after last week's Supreme Court ruling.
The court ruled that corporations and unions can spend unlimited money on ads urging people to vote for or against candidates. The decision was sought by interest groups, including one that represents American businesses, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. They argued that restrictions on ads they could finance close to elections violated their free-speech rights, and the court agreed.
Congressional candidates who find themselves attacked by a flood of special-interest TV ads in the 2010 elections will likely reach out to their party's biggest donors for money to help them counter the blitz.