New Poster Child for Citizens United: Ryan Zinke
(Helena, MT) - Ryan Zinke and his former coworkers at SOFA PAC won a victory over transparency and average Montanans today as the Senate failed to pass a constitutional amendment banning dark money from elections. Yesterday, the U.S. House blocked a vote on the same constitutional amendment instead choosing to defend corporate spending in elections and uphold the Citizens United Supreme Court decision.
Before he decided to run for congress, Zinke chaired the dark money group Special Operations of America Political Action Committee.
Zinke has publicly stated his support for the Citizens United decision, saying “I can tell you, money drives message and that is the cold facts of it.” Zinke’s campaign may not have much cash on hand, but his former coworkers at SOFA PAC have a large fundraising apparatus that is churning for their former boss. It is illegal for a campaign and a super-PAC to coordinate, but Zinke has pushed the limits of legality and everyone has taken notice:
“I think Ryan Zinke needs a lesson in Montana history—we had the Copper Kings buying seats in the legislature and now we have Mr. Zinke and his super-PAC buying a seat in the House of Representatives,” said Bryan Watt, a Montana Democratic Party spokesperson. “Montanans have made it clear time and time again that they do not like dark money in politics, and it's time for Mr. Zinke to denounce his super-PAC pals and support keeping dark money out of Montana.”