The [Supreme Court] majority argued that the First Amendment protects associations of individuals in addition to individual speakers, and further that the First Amendment does not allow prohibitions of speech based on the identity of the speaker. Corporations, as associations of individuals, therefore have speech rights under the First Amendment. Because spending money is essential to disseminating speech, as established in Buckley v. Valeo, limiting a corporation’s ability to spend money is unconstitutional because it limits the ability of its members to associate effectively and to speak on political issues. (all links in paragraph, except Buckley v. Valeo, added by blog author)
…prohibited corporations and unions from using their general treasury to fund “electioneering communications” (broadcast advertisements mentioning a candidate) within 30 days before a primary or 60 days before a general election (Source: Wikipedia)
The 2010 Citizens United decision opened the floodgates and allowed millions of dollars of corporate money to flow into campaign coffers. Costs for the 2012 presidential campaign were 6 billion dollars, up more than 7% over the 2008 election.
As far as I know, not a single banker or Wall St. financier has stood trial for his/her role in the 2008 financial crisis. When there are no consequences for bringing the world economy to its knees, we are already living in an oligarchy. That is why every person of every political persuasion has an interest in getting money out of politics as much as possible, and this begins by turning back the Citizens United decision. In the video below, Cenk Uygur of the Young Turks Network explains how to contact your state and federal representatives to make your opinion known. In the interest of basic fairness, of course, if you support this decision, you can call to express your support of it as well.
- Letter: ‘Citizens United’ ruling was blow for free political expression (tcpalm.com)
- Congressman seeks to overturn Citizens United (sfgate.com)
- Move to Amend: Citizens United is Just the Tip of the Iceberg (proglib.newsvine.com)
- Citizens United 2.0 To Go Before US Supreme Court (crooksandliars.com)