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Old 04-02-2014, 08:36 AM  
WhawhaWhat WhawhaWhat is offline
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The Supreme Court strikes down campaign donation limits

http://news.yahoo.com/high-court-voi...--finance.html

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court struck down limits Wednesday in federal law on the overall campaign contributions the biggest individual donors may make to candidates, political parties and political action committees.

The justices said in a 5-4 vote that Americans have a right to give the legal maximum to candidates for Congress and president, as well as to parties and PACs, without worrying that they will violate the law when they bump up against a limit on all contributions, set at $123,200 for 2013 and 2014. That includes a separate $48,600 cap on contributions to candidates.

But their decision does not undermine limits on individual contributions to candidates for president or Congress, now $2,600 an election.

Chief Justice John Roberts announced the decision, which split the court's liberal and conservative justices. Roberts said the aggregate limits do not act to prevent corruption, the rationale the court has upheld as justifying contribution limits.

The overall limits "intrude without justification on a citizen's ability to exercise 'the most fundamental First Amendment activities,'" Roberts said, quoting from the court's seminal 1976 campaign finance ruling in Buckley v. Valeo.

Justice Clarence Thomas agreed with the outcome of the case, but wrote separately to say that he would have gone further and wiped away all contribution limits.

Justice Stephen Breyer, writing for the liberal dissenters, took the unusual step of reading a summary of his opinion from the bench.

Congress enacted the limits in the wake of Watergate-era abuses to discourage big contributors from trying to buy votes with their donations and to restore public confidence in the campaign finance system.

But in a series of rulings in recent years, the Roberts court has struck down provisions of federal law aimed at limiting the influence of big donors as unconstitutional curbs on free speech rights.

Most notably, in 2010, the court divided 5-4 in the Citizens United case to free corporations and labor unions to spend as much as they wish on campaign advocacy, as long as it is independent of candidates and their campaigns. That decision did not affect contribution limits to individual candidates, political parties and political action committees.

Republican activist Shaun McCutcheon of Hoover, Ala., the national Republican party and Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky challenged the overall limits on what contributors may give in a two-year federal election cycle. The total is $123,200, including a separate $48,600 cap on contributions to candidates, for 2013 and 2014.

Limits on individual contributions, currently $2,600 per election to candidates for Congress, are not at issue.

Relaxed campaign finance rules have reduced the influence of political parties, McConnell and the GOP argued.

McCutcheon gave the symbolically significant $1,776 to 15 candidates for Congress and wanted to give the same amount to 12 others. But doing so would have put him in violation of the cap.

Nearly 650 donors contributed the maximum amount to candidates, PACs and parties in the last election cycle, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

The court did not heed warnings from Solicitor General Donald Verrilli Jr. and advocates of campaign finance limits that donors would be able to funnel large amounts of money to a favored candidate in the absence of the overall limit.

The Republicans also called on the court to abandon its practice over nearly 40 years of evaluating limits on contributions less skeptically than restrictions on spending.

The differing levels of scrutiny have allowed the court to uphold most contribution limits, because of the potential for corruption in large direct donations to candidates. At the same time, the court has found that independent spending does not pose the same risk of corruption and has applied a higher level of scrutiny to laws that seek to limit spending.

If the court were to drop the distinction between contributions and expenditures, even limits on contributions to individual candidates for Congress, currently $2,600 per election, would be threatened, said Fred Wertheimer, a longtime supporter of stringent campaign finance laws.
The more you give, the more you get.
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:19 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by sd4chiefs View Post
Lets just get it over with and make the Koch brothers king of the USA.
You said 'koch brothers' but I think you mean 'unions'

Since they donate about 10X as much money...
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:33 AM   #17
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If you don't like it then the way to fix it is with an amendment.
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:39 AM   #18
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Reid must be pissing himself in a fit of rage
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:42 AM   #19
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I'm about as surprised about this as I am that congress has never been successful in voting through term limitations.
Unconstitutional. Supreme Court has already ruled on this, and the only way you could make it Constitutional would be through the Amendment process which is how the Presidential terms were limited post-FDR.

http://www.nytimes.com/1995/05/23/us...-decision.html
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:43 AM   #20
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Reid must be pissing himself in a fit of rage
Not really. The gambling interests have kept him in office for a long while now.
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:46 AM   #21
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I’m really tired today and having a bit of an issue with reading comprehension. Did anything change at all?
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:46 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Cochise View Post
Not really. The gambling interests have kept him in office for a long while now.
This is about the Koch brothers providing an unfair advantage to Republicans.
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:49 AM   #23
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Bu, but Soros provides an edge to Democrats...socialist, One World leaning ones too.
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:49 AM   #24
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It's time for an Amendment. Now.
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:50 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BucEyedPea View Post
Bu, but Soros provides an edge to Democrats...socialist, One World leaning ones too.
But thats ok, just ask Cosmo
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Old 04-02-2014, 11:07 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Cochise View Post
You know, if one side wants unfettered contributions, at least it's fair to everyone. Everyone has the same right, to contribute as much as they please.

When you start restricting groups who aren't friendly to you, or picking and choosing who can contribute and how much in order to game the system and give your friends more influence but not others, then you end up with these legal messes.
How about we restrict everyone. Fair enough?
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Old 04-02-2014, 11:50 AM   #27
RaiderH8r RaiderH8r is offline
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Do any of you really understand this decision or is this just typical, knee jerk reaction?
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Old 04-02-2014, 11:52 AM   #28
RaiderH8r RaiderH8r is offline
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This decision did away with aggregate limits. Not base limits. Base limits for individual contributions to campaigns, PACs and parties remain in place.

Moreover, these limits, aggregate and base, have nothing, zero, zip, zilch to do with corporate contributions.
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Old 04-02-2014, 11:56 AM   #29
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The government's argument in support of aggregate limits was based on the notion that an individual could circumvent base limits by giving to parties and PACs funds earmarked to go to a candidate. This is currently prohibited by law and any such earmarked contribution would count against that donor's base limit for a candidate. Therefore, aggregate limits did little to nothing to dissuade this activity.

Christ, read the ****ing thing for yourselves. Go out and understand the nature and statutes governing campaign finance rather than being spoon fed this misinformed pablum.

http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions...2-536_e1pf.pdf
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Old 04-02-2014, 11:57 AM   #30
RaiderH8r RaiderH8r is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Lane View Post
How about we restrict everyone. Fair enough?
No. That is a violation of the First Amendment.
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