Skip to main content

Common Cause

Common Cause, U.S. organization that seeks a "reordering of national priorities and revitalization of the public process to make our political and governmental institutions more responsive to the needs of the nation and its citizens." Established in 1970 by John W. Gardner, it succeeded the Urban Coalition Action Council, founded in 1968. Common Cause supports a large number of political reforms, including campaign finance reform, government ethics and accountability, and nuclear control agreements. It has sponsored voter registration drives nation-wide and has worked for a liberalization of voting registration. Common Cause has used ads, computerized Federal Election Commission records, lobbying, media outreach and especially litigation to promote reform. Its legal actions helped force disclosure of individuals and corporations that had anonymously contributed money to the 1972 presidential campaign. In 1991 its ad campaign, aimed at toughening a campaign finance bill containing no aggregate limit on PAC money for Congressmen, criticized Democratic Congressmen for collecting special interest money for campaigns. Located in Washington, D.C., the group has about 200,000 members.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Common Cause." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 13 Nov. 2018 <https://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Common Cause." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (November 13, 2018). https://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/common-cause

"Common Cause." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved November 13, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/common-cause

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.