Welcome login | signup
Language en es fr

Forum Post: Why is there so much ignorance here on exactly what the Citizens United decision did and did not do?

Posted 6 years ago on Oct. 12, 2011, 7:09 p.m. EST by JohnnySuburban (88)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

"The case did NOT involve the federal ban on direct contributions from corporations or unions to candidate campaigns or political parties, which remain illegal in races for federal office."


yet ppl here in OWS continue to lie about what it allows...why?



Read the Rules
[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 6 years ago

It's all about unlimited, undisclosed soft money, which is all it takes to own the system.

Copypasta job from the link, covers it pretty well: International

Ambassador Janez Lenarčič, speaking for the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe's election body, which has overseen over 150 elections, stated that the ruling may adversely affect the organization's two commitments of "giving voters a genuine choice and giving candidates a fair chance" in that "it threatens to further marginalize candidates without strong financial backing or extensive personal resources, thereby in effect narrowing the political arena".[54]

[edit] Academics and attorneys

The constitutional law scholar Laurence H. Tribe wrote that the decision "marks a major upheaval in First Amendment law and signals the end of whatever legitimate claim could otherwise have been made by the Roberts Court to an incremental and minimalist approach to constitutional adjudication, to a modest view of the judicial role vis-à-vis the political branches, or to a genuine concern with adherence to precedent" and pointed out that "Talking about a business corporation as merely another way that individuals might choose to organize their association with one another to pursue their common expressive aims is worse than unrealistic; it obscures the very real injustice and distortion entailed in the phenomenon of some people using other people’s money to support candidates they have made no decision to support, or to oppose candidates they have made no decision to oppose."[55]

Former supreme court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor criticized the decision only obliquely, but warned that “In invalidating some of the existing checks on campaign spending, the majority in Citizens United has signaled that the problem of campaign contributions in judicial elections might get considerably worse and quite soon.”[56]

Richard L. Hasen, professor of election law at Loyola Law School, argued that the ruling "is activist, it increases the dangers of corruption in our political system and it ignores the strong tradition of American political equality". He also described Justice Kennedy's "specter of blog censorship" as sounding more like "the rantings of a right-wing talk show host than the rational view of a justice with a sense of political realism".[57]

Three other scholars writing in the aforementioned New York Times article were critical.[36] Heather K. Gerken, Professor of Law at Yale Law School wrote that "The court has done real damage to the cause of reform, but that damage mostly came earlier, with decisions that made less of a splash." Michael Waldman, director of the Brennan Center for Justice at N.Y.U. School of Law, opined that the decision "matches or exceeds Bush v. Gore in ideological or partisan overreaching by the court" and Fred Wertheimer, founder and president of Democracy 21 considered it "a disaster for the American people".[36]

Subsequent research by John Coates, Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, has shown that corporations with weaker, less shareholder-friendly corporate governance have been more likely to engage in corporate political activity, and spend more when they do.[58]

Professors Lucian Bebchuk at Harvard Law School and Richard Squire at Columbia Law School argue that the interests of directors and executives may significantly diverge from those of shareholders with respect to political speech decisions, that these decisions may carry special expressive significance from shareholders, and that as a result of the Citizens United decision, new laws providing shareholders with a greater role in determining how corporate money is spent on political activity would be beneficial to shareholders.[59]

[edit] Advocacy groups

A year after the decision, the liberal advocacy group Common Cause asked the Department of Justice to investigate conflicts of interest on the part of two of the Justices in the majority. The organization said that Thomas's wife was the founder and president of Liberty Central, a conservative political advocacy group that would be empowered to accept corporate contributions to run campaign advertisements, and that Scalia and Thomas had participated in political strategy sessions organized by David H. Koch and Charles G. Koch, who stood to "benefit from the decision" by taking advantage of the rights upheld by the Court.[60]

[edit] Journalists

The New York Times stated in an editorial, "The Supreme Court has handed lobbyists a new weapon. A lobbyist can now tell any elected official: if you vote wrong, my company, labor union or interest group will spend unlimited sums explicitly advertising against your re-election."[61] Jonathan Alter called it the "most serious threat to American democracy in a generation".[62] The Christian Science Monitor wrote that the Court had declared “outright that corporate expenditures cannot corrupt elected officials, that influence over lawmakers is not corruption, and that appearance of influence will not undermine public faith in our democracy.”[63]

[-] 0 points by JohnnySuburban (88) 6 years ago

so you want to address: "unlimited, undisclosed soft money"...then why not just say so?

Why lie about the Citizen's United decision?

Or as I suspect, most ppl are just ignorant as to what the decision did and didn't allow.