Court’s ruling erodes system
For those keeping score at home, a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling brings the tally to something like this. Special interest groups: 500, Democracy: 0.
Last week’s landmark high court ruling on campaign financing overturned a 63-year-old law and two of the court’s prior rulings to give corporations, unions and other special interest groups essentially a free rein when it comes to spending to support candidates.
The ruling will allow corporations and unions to spend money directly on ads that advocate electing or defeating candidates for president or Congress but are produced independently and not coordinated with the candidate’s campaign.
This decision, split 5-4, will open the floodgates to pressures from big business to get candidates to go their way or face a near limitless barrage of political ads against them.
It also removed the time-frame restrictions so corporations will now be allowed to run advertisements right up to the election.
This ruling clearly favors corporations and special interests over a fair democratic system. It opens the door for corruption the likes of which our nation hasn’t seen in decades.
Justice Anthony Kennedy’s argument that this ruling strikes down censorship and upholds free speech simply doesn’t hold water because companies had numerous avenues to support candidates without opening the deep pockets.
Justice John Paul Stevens said, “The court’s ruling threatens to undermine the integrity of elected institutions around the nation.”
This ruling also likely overturns Ohio’s ban on corporate campaign spending.
Now, the American people will be left asking who truly runs the nation, our leaders or the corporations?
Sadly, the Supreme Court gave its answer.