Political Corruption “All contributions by corporations to any political committee or for any political purpose should be forbidden by law” This quote from Theodore Roosevelt illustrates how corporate money can be disastrous when involved in election cycles. Unfortunately, this is not the case. The Supreme Court decided in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission that companies and Super PAC’s could donate unlimited amount of money to support candidates. The Citizens United ruling has caused increased political corruption in the United States by giving candidates the money they need to win an election while changing policies that would be beneficial to the company.
Under the Supreme Court case Citizens United v. FEC the supreme court ruled that corporations as an entity were considered people giving them the right to spend money to spread their options and beliefs. This case has been openly questioned in the media, among many members of the country and the government alike. It is still in effect today and the opinion has not changed by the supreme court. With corporations being considered people it brings into question what or who else could be considered person under US law. One example of a group that could benefit from being considered persons are animals. Animals are mistreated everyday and if they had the rights of people then this could be different. Every argument or discussion has two sides, in this case the two sides are that animals should be considered persons and the other is that they should not be considered persons. Both sides have their merits and their faults.
The Supreme Court Case Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission (FEC) greatly affected the future of American politics and government and was a major topic of discussion for many years. The case was initially argued on March 24, 2009 and it was reargued on September 9, 2009. Eventually, the Supreme Court decided on a resolution regarding the issues being argued in this case on January 21, 2010 under Roberts court. To begin with, the FEC is a bipartisan, six-member group who enforce and regulate the campaign finance laws, in addition to enforcing obedience with their requirements. It was first created by the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1974, which reformed campaign finances. Furthermore, Citizens United v. FEC dealt with the regulation
Through the course of history the Supreme Court has had to oversee many monumental cases. One case in particular that I believe has had a paramount effect on policy, corporations and elections is that of Citizens United v. FEC. This case brings to light many disputed issues two of them
One main issue raised by presidential hopefuls revolves around campaign money received by candidates, donated by multi-million dollar corporations. Although it remains illegal for these corporations to directly donate large sums of money to political campaigns and political parties, the fear that political and judicial figures in the American political systems are being bought out by these affluent corporations still worries an inordinate amount of people in the United States. In 2009, the Supreme Court ruled in Citizens United v. FEC whether these wealthy companies had the constitutional right to air advertisements they paid for using company expenditures. Similar to Supreme Court cases within the past half-century, the case suggests that
No one knows how much of that money came from corporate treasures. The courts five to four decision said that is it OK for corporations and labor unions to spend as much as they want to convince people to vote for or against a candidate. The courts decision also stated that the first amendment prohibits government from placing limits on independent spending for political purposes by corporations and unions.
Citizens United v. FEC (2010) The main constitutional question within the case of Citizens United v. FEC in 2010 regarded whether sections of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act infringed upon the free speech clause granted to the people through the First Amendment. The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA) instituted in 2002 controlled how political campaigns could be financed. The act criminalized ads produced by corporations that expressly advocate for or against candidates within sixty days of general elections and thirty days of primary elections. A claim was made that in preventing funding of political campaigning by certain corporations, the government was essentially preventing them from demonstrating free political speech and breaching
William M. Milburn Dr. Carroll Gov 101.01 4/29/2015 Citizens United v. Federal Election Committee The Federal Court Case of Citizens United v. Federal Election Committee is a case with a controversial outcome. The Supreme Court came to the decision, through a 5-4 vote, that for-profit corporations have the same rights to finance political campaigns as citizens. The Supreme Court held in Citizens United that it was unconstitutional to ban free speech through the limiting of independent advertisements by corporations, associations, or unions (CU vs. FEC). The Supreme Court Decision allows corporations and unions to use their financial resources to either promote or persuade against any political candidate on an advertisement. The ruling also allows corporations and unions to donate to political campaigns and does away with any limits on how much a corporate donor can contribute to a campaign (ibid). While the businesses may not give money straight to campaigns, they have the choice to persuade the population of voters as a whole through the use of advertisements, just as Political Action Committees do. The corporate funding of political advertisements is made possible by the First Amendment because it guarantees the right to free speech, and political spending is one form of that protected speech.
It is unsensible to believe that even the upper crest of the US financially can keep up with a corporation. Therefore receiving donations from corporations is the candidate's main goal, while ignoring the many small donors that truly represent America’s views. While there is no solid proof of corporations influencing candidates decisions thee have been sketchy moment in which corporations money influencing candidates decisions have been suspected. In 2000 when Bush was running for president an energy company based in Houston, Enron donated a substantial amount of money to Bush. They donated 2.5 million making them the highest donating energy company and the 36th highest corporate donator. After Bush was elected he passed 6 bills extremely beneficial for Enron that multiplied their revenue by nearly three times. In all Corporations donating limitless to candidates forces a candidate to pass bills beneficial for their donors and not the majority of people. This needs to stop or the purity of America’s political system goes down the
Furthermore, they must disclose that the candidate of which the advertising is about does not condone the message ("Citizens United versus Federal Election Commission."). The Supreme Court struck down the law, thus essentially allowing unlimited funding of candidates from corporations. The unrestricted access that campaigns have when funding grants legal impairment of those who are unable to donate money as a corporation would, thus making the votes of the people matter less.
Ever since the born of the United States Bill of Rights, controversy and discussion about the right First Amendment guaranteed, the freedom of speech has never stopped. The case of Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission in 2010, shown a new standpoint of the Supreme Court of the United States in aspects of political equation and freedom of speech, has become a significant landmark in political history. According to the adjudication of this case, shareholders and other groups have the equal right as individuals, and they are allowed to invest in supporting or criticizing political candidates.
In 2012, in an effort to win reelection as President of the United States, Barack Obama raised $1072.6 million dollars. $78.8 million of it was raised by the Priorities USA Action Super PAC. (Ashkenas, Ericson, Parlapiano, and Willis, 2012) PACs or Political Action Committees are groups formed in order to
From the very first elections held in the United States, there has always been a strong link between money and politics. During the first elections in the late 1700’s you had to be a white male landowner over the age of 21 in order to vote, meaning that you had to have money in order to have your vote counted. It seems today that we cannot go a day with out seeing campaign finance in the media, whether or not it is through advertisements for politicians in the media or asked to donate money to help let your favorite candidate win. Because campaign finance has always been on the back burner of political issues, there has hardly been any change to the large influence money has over the election process and politicians. While money has it’s
After the Citizen United vs. the FEC Supreme Court ruling, in favor of Citizens United, political campaigns have the ability to raise much greater funds through organizations called super PACs. According to Michael Beckel a political reporter for the Center for Public Integrity, “Officially known as “independent expenditure-only committees”— and unofficially dubbed “super PACs”—these political action committees are able to raise unlimited amounts of money from individuals, corporations, unions, and other organizations” (Beckel 655). On top of the ability to raise unlimited funds, the individuals donating are not required to disclose their names. This could lead to some serious corruption. Super PACs can run as much advertisement either for or against a political candidate, seriously swaying the way citizen’s vote and view a candidate. In fact “super PACs are allowed to use 100 percent of the funds they raise to influence elections” (Beckel 656). No one expected this Supreme Court ruling to have an impact so fast. As stated in an article published by The Nation, “The total number of TV ads for House, Senate and gubernatorial candidates in 2010 was 2,870,000. This was a 250 percent increase over the number of TV ads
Political spending has been an important topic lately in regards to the latest election, where the current president of the US and also billionaire, Donald J. Trump, openly denied super pacs but still utilized smaller donations through his website. Whereas Hillary Clinton openly accepted very large super pacs of upwards