Citizens United Revisited?

U.S. Supreme Court
The U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. Photo by Mark Thomas

The petition for a writ of certiorari has been filed in American Tradition Partnership, Inc. (ATP) v. Bullock. With the filing, the U.S. Supreme Court is now presented with an opportunity to re-examine its ill-considered Citizens United ruling.

The practical realities of Citizens United have proven a far cry from the comparative utopia imagined in Justice Kennedy’s majority opinion. Influence buying in Washington has been even easier in the wake of the controversial decision and there is little resemblance to the majority opinion’s alternate universe where contributions are disclosed, coordination doesn’t happen and independent expenditures can’t possibly lead to even the appearance of corruption.

The Montana Supreme Court with a clearer focus on reality and a better grasp of its own history upheld the state’s ban on corporate independent political expenditures after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the federal ban on such expenditures inCitizens United as a violation of the 1st Amendment.  Petitioners are seeking to have the Supreme Court overturn the state court’s ruling.

There will no doubt be a number of additional filings related to this filing.  The Campaign Legal Center is coordinating the amici effort on behalf of the State of Montana.

To read the petition for certiorari, click here.