March 13, 2010
The best democracy money can buy
Posted by Usha Rodrigues

According to WaPo, Murray Hill is running for the Republican Congressional primary in my home state of Maryland.  Murray Hill is also a "progressive" PR firm looking to garner publicity and pointedly criticize Citizens United.  Pesky age restrictions like being a U.S. citizen and being at least 18 years old kept its voter registration from succeeding, but you can still view its website and YouTube video.  Life imitating art

I'm still organizing my Citizens Unitedthoughts, but it continues to amaze me how much this opinion resonates with the general public.  I had dinner with a college friend last week who went the English Ph.D., freelance route, staying far, far from the legal world.  She refered to it knowingly as the "Corporations are people, too" opinion. 

It's liberals' Kelo, isn't it?

Update: Larrry Ribstein responds, and has helpfully compiled his blog musings here.  I think Larry frames the conservative response well: corporations aren't "people, too" but people speak through them.  Still, the lefties have a powerful soundbite that resonates with a big chunk of society.

I'm currently working on a theory that suggests that we might draw a principled distinction between associations organized solely to make money and those organized for a different purpose.  Larry won't like this because it limits for-profit corporate speech, but it would broaden pre-Citizens United speech rights by permitting unlimited spending/speech by nonprofits like the Chamber of Commerce and labor unions (as well as Citizens United itself).  More later.

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