The Supreme Court's Next Disastrous Decision

Written by Jason Simpkins
Posted March 18, 2014

At this point, most Americans have come to acknowledge the corrosive effect money has on our political system.

Indeed, most of us agree that political influence should be determined by public opinion, not campaign contributions.

But there are still at least five people in this country who believe money is a legitimate substitute for the voice of the American people.

And unfortunately for us, those five people serve on the Supreme Court.

That was made clear in 2010 when the highest court in the land struck down the longstanding limits on campaign contributions from corporations. Now, companies can make unlimited contributions to support candidates that will serve their interest, regardless of what the public wants.

Never in American history have corporate entities held so much sway over the electoral process, and consequently, legislation.

And it's about to get even worse.

The Supreme Court is about to rule on another campaign finance case: McCutcheon v. the Federal Election Committee.

This case challenges the constitutionality of overall contribution limits.

Currently, an individual can only contribute a total of $74,600 to party committees and PACs, and $48,600 to federal candidates.

Of course, the inconsistency here is glaring: If corporations can make unlimited donations, then why can't individuals?

The Court has already ruled that money is speech, and thus protected under the First Amendment. Citizens should have at least as much right to speak as corporations – which lest we forget, are also people – do.

The end result: More money/political power concentrated in a smaller group of people – those capable of donating more than $123, 200 in a single election cycle – and a democracy that's more estranged than ever from common man.

Furthermore, the ruling could undermine state-level campaign laws, further eroding the democratic process.

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