Saturday, January 23, 2010

Free Speech Rights - Obama v. Public

Obama whined about the Supreme Court decision this week to undue a century of campaign finance law and free speech restrictions. In Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, the high court said that corporations and unions (labor unions are corporations under section 501(c)5) have the same free speech rights as individuals and political donations constitute a form of free speech protected under the First Amendment. Reported by The Hill, Obama said,

"This week, the United States Supreme Court handed a huge victory to the special interests and their lobbyists – and a powerful blow to our efforts to rein in corporate influence... This ruling strikes at our democracy itself...

"When this ruling came down, I instructed my administration to get to work immediately with members of Congress willing to fight for the American people to develop a forceful, bipartisan response to this decision... We have begun that work, and it will be a priority for us until we repair the damage that has been done."
In other words, Obama doesn't like the the fact that individuals, corporations, and unions are now on equal footing. In the past 102 yrs since the first campaign finance laws were past in 1907, the law has favored unions to the detriment of individuals, corporations, and business in general, big and small. It isn't entirely clear if Obama believes political contributions is free speech protected by the Constitution, except for unions. In coming months, Team Obama will be working hard to restore the imbalance.

However, the commoners don't agree with Obama. Rather, they agree with SCOTUS as the pollsters at Gallup found. The poll was conducted in October 2009, preceding the high court decision by several months.

Though the public disagrees with Obama that contribution rules should apply to both individuals and corporations alike, the public generally agrees that limits should also apply to both entities and this crosses political aisles.

The SCOTUS decision creates a new question concerning the legal body (corpus) of corporations and the full extent of the rights reasserted last week. Because corporations are considered to be essentially the same as an individual citizen with the abilities, rights, and duties to grow, expand, pay taxes, enter contracts, contribute to political causes, die, etc., do corporations now have a right to vote as any other individual? If so, how is that to be accomplished? If not, is the Court prepared to return to a 'separate but equal' philosophy concerning some bodies, but not others? But, unlike Plessy v. Ferguson, corporations and unions would not be 'separate but equal' to individuals because they would experience taxation without representation which was the prime cause of American independence.

Curiouser and curiouser.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.


Tom said...

Have no idea why he should complain. Soros and company have donated millions to his campaign. Didn't they get what they bought?

Anonymous said...

If you take any issue that the American people agree gives them more freedom....that jerk iws going to oppose it. Don

Indigo Red said...

Soros represents Big Socialism, Big Welfare, Big Union, Big Death etc., as oppossed to Big Corporation, Big Oil, Big Pharma, Big Income, Big Life, etc. Seems if you put 'Big' in front of anything nowdays, it's evil.

Obama and Crew are against increased freedoms because it interferes with their goal of Big Power.