WEEK SIX LECTURE
Money, Politics, Law
Buckley V. Valeo 1975 (a 71 decision)
• Did the Federal Elections Campaign Act of 1972 violate the First Amendment?
• NO on contributions to candidates
• YES on limiting spending by candidates or independent expenditures.
• Why the difference? Integrity of democratic system.
First National Bank of Boston V. Bellotti 1978
• Rehnquist dissent
• Do corporations; receive first amendment rights like individuals?
• No fought about Mass controlling corp’s spending during elections.
• Corporations do not exist by nature; law an active state or federal government
Citizens United V. FEC 2008
• Overturned previous decisions to rule that independent spending by corporations
and unions is protected under the First Amendment.
• Now they can spend what they want and when they want, and advocate for who
• Two critical issues.
1. Free speech issues as in Buckley.
2. Status of corporations: are they people or not?
MCCutcheon V SEC (2013)
• Are limits on total contributions to candidates ($48,000) and t party campaign
committees ($75,000) an unconstitutional limit on free speech?
• What’s argument against? Leakage from one campaign to another?