Praise for the Book

Praise for the Book

“When money talks, democracy walks.  Read this book to learn how we, the people, can take back our elections from the billionaires and overturn a Supreme Court ruling that is a gross misreading of our Constitution.”
— Robert B. Reich, Chancellor’s Professor, University of California at Berkeley and former U.S. Secretary of Labor

“Derek Cressman has explored the great issues of money in politics from every perspective: as a scholarly observer, as a passionate activist, as a serious candidate. And he has drawn from his years of struggle on behalf of nothing less than democracy itself an essential insight: “If money is speech, then speech is no longer free.” Cressman’s brilliant examination of all the questions, all the ideas, all the issues that extend from that statement provides an essential starting point for every discussion of how to fix our broken electoral and governing systems. When Money Talks – The High Price of ‘Free Speech’ and the Selling of Democracy is much more than a book — although it is a very fine book. When Money Talks is the key we have been looking for to unlock a future where the will of the people again triumphs over the money power.”
— John Nichols, The Nation

“Derek Cressman, virtually channeling Jefferson, has elegantly assembled a startling and motivating summary of how far our political process has degenerated as a result of these Supreme Court rulings, and offers some very specific solutions. Read on!”
— From the Foreword, by Thom Hartmann

“Already, sixteen states and some 650 localities have called on Congress to send the states a constitutional amendment overturning Citizens United. In two states, Colorado and Montana, voters sent the message directly, through ballot measures that Derek Cressman helped lead when he was a vice president at Common Cause. We can thank Derek for his early, strategic thinking and organizing that built momentum for a constitutional amendment as the people’s solution to the problem.”
— From the Epilogue, by Miles Rapoport, President of Common Cause.

“There aren’t many people who can cut through the legalese and fine print surrounding the complicated issue of money in politics as cogently as Derek Cressman. This book shows yet again that he is one of the most thoughtful, effective leaders in the fight to take back our democracy.”
Michael B. Keegan, President, People For the American Way

“Derek Cressman nails it: Money isn’t speech, it’s power. After the Supreme Court’s folly in Citizens United, concentrated money and power is destroying our democracy. But we can save it with a 28thAmendment to the Constitution, and this book shows all of us how.  Read it and join this historic work of all Americans.”
Jeff Clements, Author of Corporations Are Not People: Reclaiming Democracy From Big Money & Global Corporations.

“Cressman’s book is a powerful indictment of Citizens United, and provides thoughtful ideas on how We the People can help restore our democracy.”
— Lisa Graves Executive Director of the Center for Media and Democracy, publisher of and

“When the story is written about how Americans came together to overturn Citizens United and end billionaire rule Derek Cressman will have his own chapter.   His passion for democracy is exceeded only by his clarity and his insights.   When Money Talks is a map to the 28th Amendment goal line.”
— Michele Sutter, Co-founder of the Money Out Voters In Coalition

“The movement to overturn Citizens United is turning into a stampede. Derek Cressman is helping lead the way. Read When Money Talks and join the movement.”
— Ben Cohen, Co-founder of Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream and head stamper at 

“For more than twenty years, Derek Cressman has been at the vanguard calling for a constitutional amendment to end the big money dominance of our elections.  In When Money Talks, he powerfully makes the case why our current system of unlimited campaign spending is a threat to our Republic and how we can advance and win a 28th Amendment to ensure that all voices can be heard in the political process on a level playing field.  Derek Cressman is a visionary for our democracy, and this is a must-read book for all Americans, across the political spectrum, who want to take the country back from the oligarchs and reclaim it for “We the People.”
John Bonifaz, Co-founder and President, Free Speech For People


Praise for The Recall’s Broken Promise — How Big Money Still Runs California Politics (2007)

“The price of power is highest in California, site of the most expensive elections in the nation, where powerful interests have had a stranglehold for decades.  So when a former bodybuilder and actor celebrity publicly promised not to become entangled with those special interests, it frankly had a hollow ring. And sure enough, in his first-term as governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger was no Terminator when it comes to smarmy insiderism and big money politics as usual. These issues are historic and systemic, as campaign finance expert and nonpartisan reformer Derek Cressman explains in this important book, and he has informed, thoughtful ideas about how citizens can help tame the beast of corruption.”
–Chuck Lewis, Founder of the Center for Public Integrity

“A no-holds barred expose of how powerful interests use campaign contributions, lavish gifts from lobbyists, and outright deception to take over the government of the world’s sixth largest economy. Cressman also points readers to the tools they need to start taking back our government.”
— Peter Coyote, actor-author

“Insightful, well-researched work. This book illustrates the sordid history of campaign finance and the politics of ballot measures. It is a comprehensive look at the role of campaign dollars in California initiative and recall politics. A must read for both concerned citizens and students of direct democracy alike.”
— David McCuan, Professor of Political Science, Sonoma State University

“No wonder Arnold spent all those years in the gym– he knew there’d come a time when he’d be lifting all that special interest money in Sacramento! This book lifts the rug in the governor’s office to show that Big Money still rules in California politics.”
— Jim Hightower, author, radio commentator, and publisher of The Hightower Lowdown