Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Will Supreme Court Expand "Money as Speech" Rule and Strike Donation Limits?

On Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in a case that could further expand the reach of its controversial ruling that political spending is a form of speech protected by the First Amendment -- and which could give the one percent even more influence over politics.

Citizens Protest Supreme Court's Citizens United Decision
The Backbone Campaign Uses Light to Protest the Supreme Court's "Citizens United" Ruling

In McCutcheon v. FEC, the Court will hear a challenge to regulations on the total amount a person can contribute to political candidates. The Court's five-person majority in recent years has expressed hostility to limits on expenditures made "independent" of political campaigns, most famously in Citizens United, which struck down limits on corporate independent expenditures and paved the way for Super PACs and the scourge of dark money nonprofits. But the McCutcheon case involves a challenge to limits on how much a person can donate directly to a candidate, which the Court has previously upheld as constitutional.

What Citizens United did to the "independent expenditure" side of campaigns -- unleashing out-of-control spending by Super PACs, trade associations, and dark money nonprofits not officially coordinating with a candidate -- McCutcheon could do to the campaign contribution side.

Post-Citizens United, wealthy donors can now give unlimited amounts to Super PACs, but still must comply with limits on donations to candidates and political parties.

Under current law, individuals may give no more than $2,600 to any one federal candidate running for office and up to $48,600 spread among multiple candidates.



Anonymous said...

I have a right to support the candidates that I think are best.

Anonymous said...

"I have a right to support the candidates that I think are best."

No you don't. Not here in Amerika. You think you have rights? How naive.

Stefan v said...

Money is speech? The harebrained excuses this fascist bananarepublic keeps coming up with day to day are hilarious. Btw, if you think voting has any meaningful effect, you may be mistaken. Choosing between two scoundrels every four years won't make any difference. Either use your guns while you have them, or just surrender it all now. The prudent thing to do would be leave while you can...

Anonymous said...

It really doesn't matter since money controls the political process in the US. This is why the system is so completely corrupt and dysfunctional. In spite of what they may believe, the people have nothing to say. Yes, they do have the vote, but election fraud is so widespread that their votes mean nothing. They are simply meant to keep the sheep calm and quiet.

Anonymous said...

Anyone who believes America is a free country is a total fool. Or, knows nothing of real freedom.

Stan B said...

"Money" has always been intimately tied to "speech." Do you think that "Poor Richard's Almanac" published itself for free with no material or labor costs? You think that anyone would have cared if a group of poor, destitute indigents had tried to get their "Federalist Papers" published in support of the Constitution?

Hiring a press to print your political flier or renting a stage to put on your political event have always been seen as the exercise of "Free Speech." The rich have always had an advantage in getting their message out. To claim that there needs to be some sort of "parity" between the parties in a competition is a PROGRESSIVE attitude that only pulls all men and women DOWN to the same level.

Anonymous said...

if money is speech, then hollywood should be impacted , how much do they spend on making a movie? 100 million or more?