May 07, 2013

The Case for Citizens United

The Citizens United v. FEC decision has drawn a lot of criticism for giving corporations rights to free speech. Some have argued for a constitutional amendment to limit corporate speech. The CATO Institute recently published a Policy Analysis by John Samples making the case against these amendments. Samples writes,
Concerns about the putative political and electoral consequences of the Citizens United decision have fostered several proposals to amend the Constitution. Most simply propose giving Congress unchecked new power over spending on political speech, power that will be certainly abused. The old and new public purposes cited for restricting political spending and speech (preventing corruption, restoring equality, and others) are not persuasive in general and do not justify the breadth of power granted under these amendments.
The core of his argument is that any perceived negative effects of the Citizens United decision are not worth expanding the rights of congress to control freedom of speech.