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The most brazen invitation to oligarchy in Supreme Court history

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | April 2, 2014

This is no April Fool’s joke. Today, in a 5-4 decision written by Chief Justice John Roberts, the Supreme Court in “McCutcheon vs. Federal Election Commission,” went beyond “Citizen’s United” to strike down overall limits on how much an individual may contribute in one election cycle to innumerable federal candidates and to party committees.JohnRoberts

Overturning 40 years of national policy and 38 years of judicial precedent, the Court’s decision allows federal officeholders to solicit and individual donors to pour as much as $3.6 million directly into federal campaigns every election cycle – buying unparalleled personal influence in Washington and drowning out the voices of ordinary citizens. (It gives me no satisfaction that I testified against John Roberts at his confirmation hearing years ago.) This is the most brazen invitation to oligarchy in Supreme Court history.

In my view, we must amend the Constitution to establish once and for all that (1) money is not speech under the First Amendment, (2) corporations are not people, and (3) we the people have the right to set limits on how much money individuals and corporations can spend on elections. You with me?

Cross-posted from Robert Reich’s Facebook page