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The Challenge of 2014:  Regulating the Politics of Money and Voter Protection

The 2012 election cycle saw unprecedented amounts of money flood the political system.  While some have minimized the impact of Citizens United v. FEC due to the result at the top of the ticket, the influence of massive, target campaign contributions in other races significantly altered the political landscape at the federal level.  When combined with a well funded and systematic effort by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) to alter election procedures at the state level, a herculean effort was required by the Department of Justice and the advocacy community to protect equal access to the ballot box.  Despite these efforts, however, voters were still required to endure long lines and complained of election irregularities.  As we move toward the 2014 midterm elections, the challenges of last year will be heightened due to historically lower turnout levels,  the continuing impact of money politics and even more refined voter suppression efforts.

The 2014 election cycle will present two critical legislative challenges:  1).  Regulation of election contributions and expenditures and 2).  Modernization of the election system, with an emphasis on early voting and enforcement of voter protection laws.  We believe the legislative and outreach strategy necessary to achieve the above objectives.

Legislative and Outreach Strategy

Bills to be Introduced

Bill to Amend Voting Rights Act of 2014 as Introduced


  • Shelby County, Alabama v. Holder/Voting Rights Act
  • Arizona v. Inter Tribal Council of Arizona (Gonzales)
  • McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission (docket 12-536)





1/17/13 - Billion-Dollar Democracy: The Unprecedented Role of Money in the 2012 Elections
A Dēmos report on the outside spending from new sources on the first presidential election since Citizens United
Source: Adam Lioz & Blair Bowie, January 2013

2/26/13 - Voting rights back in court
Opinion: Each reauthorization of the 1965 law upholds the democratic ideals of this country.
Source: POLITICO, Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner and Rep. John Conyers, February 2013

More on Constitution

Aug 21, 2017 Press Release

Congressman Bobby Scott (D-VA), ranking member of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, Congressman John Conyers  (D-MI), ranking member of the House Committee on Judiciary, Congressman Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, and Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Judiciary, sent a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Secretary of Educat

Aug 11, 2017 Press Release

U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and U.S. Representative John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI) filed an amicus brief today in support of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington’s (CREW) effort to hold President Trump accountable for his ongoing violations of the Foreign Emoluments Clause. Blumenthal and Conyers are the lead plaintiffs in a separate effort to compel the President to comply with the Constitution’ critically important anti-corruption measure. 

Aug 4, 2017 Press Release

More than 50 Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee, Armed Services Committee, and the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus today wrote to Secretary of Defense James Mattis and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Joseph F. Dunford, Jr. to urge that they not comply with any unconstitutional directive to ban transgender individuals from serving in the United States military. 

Aug 3, 2017 Forums


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Washington, D.C. – On July 24, 2017, Representatives Steve Cohen (D-TN), Mark Sanford (R-SC), House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), and Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) hosted a bipartisan forum on freedom of the press entitled, “The State of Press Freedom in 21st Century America.”


Aug 2, 2017 Press Release

Representatives Bobby Scott (VA-03) and John Conyers, Jr. (MI-13), the ranking members of the House Committees on Education and the Workforce and the Judiciary, respectively, issued the following statement after reports surfaced that the Department of Justice plans to attack and undermine affirmative action programs in colleges and universities. 

Jul 26, 2017 Press Release

House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers (MI-13) today gave the following statement during the hearing of  H.Res. 446, a resolution of inquiry regarding Jeff Sessions' recusal and James Comey firing

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Jul 26, 2017 Press Release

House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers (MI-13) today gave the following statement during the hearing  of  H.R. 391, the “The Asylum Reform and Border Protection Act.”

H.R. 391, the “Asylum Reform and Border Protection Act,” is unfortunately yet another anti-immigrant measure premised on rhetoric and misinformation. 

Notwithstanding the bill’s short title, H.R. 391 does nothing to reform our Nation’s asylum system.  In fact, it dismantles it. 

Jul 25, 2017 Press Release
House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers (MI-13) today gave the following statement during the hearing of H.R. 2887, the "No Regulation Without Representation Act of 2017." Before I begin my remarks, I’d like to take a moment to recognize Joseph Ehrenkrantz for his dedicated service to the House of Representatives. Over the past two years, he has diligently served the House Judiciary Committee as a Professional Staff Member.