The Citizens United decision delivered by the Supreme Court in 2010 empowered political campaigns and corporations to move money around without detection. But corruption has followed American politics long before Citizens United. The new documentary "Dark Money" exposes the phenomenon past and present. Director Kimberly Reed and a Colorado Springs whistleblower, Sarah Arnold, featured in the film talked to Colorado Matters about making the movie and the nature of Super PAC corruption.
"Dark Money" shifts the focus from Washington, D.C., to the West, and specifically Montana. The Big Sky Country state has a long history of corporations meddling in politics, before and after Citizens United. In the early 1900s, the Anaconda Copper Company created one of the largest superfund sites in the world after buying up local newspapers and paying their way into the Montana state senate. The documentary also follows the 2016 case of former Republican state Rep. Art Wittich, who was found guilty and fined $68,000 for accepting illegal contributions from the National Right to Work Committee.