Monday, June 25, 2012

No Conversing Necessary

Today, as expected, the U.S. Supreme Court bench-slapped the Montana Supreme Court by summarily reversing— without briefing or argument—the lower court's decision to uphold Montana's restrictions on independent political expenditures by corporations. The Court, in a per curiam opinion, found that there was "no serious doubt" that the holding of Citizens United applied to the case, and the Montana law was therefore clearly unconsitutional.  

Devoted reader(s) of the blog may recall our five-part Gillette-Torvik Conversation™ on this topic. We obviously spent a lot more time conversing about this case than the Supreme Court did.


Prof. Rick Hasen has this interesting observation:

I view this as a relative victory for campaign finance reformers.  How is that possible,  when the Court has reaffirmed the correctness of Citizens United?  Because taking the case would have made things so much worse.  As I have written, I was simply baffled by the full court press to get the Court to take the case.  As Rick Pildes explains in his post today, there’s no reason to believe that the CU majority Justices care about the public outcry against the earlier decision. Taking the case would have been an opportunity for the majority of Supreme Court justices to make things worse, such as by suggesting that limits on direct contributions to candidates are unconstitutional.  The best way to win before the Roberts Court if you are a campaign reformer (aside from on disclosure issues) is not to play.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments on posts older than 30 days are moderated because almost all of those comments are spam.