Apr 28, 2011
Authors: Edited by Monica Youn
Publisher(s): The Century Foundation
Published by The Century Foundation Press & Brennan Center for Justice
For more information on Money, Politics and the Constitution, please visit www.brennancenter.org, or call Jeanine Plant-Chirlin at 646-292-8322.
Update: The Supreme Court June 27th decision in McComish v. Bennett against a provision of the Arizona public campaign financing system is the latest in a string of cases in which the Court has struck down laws designed to curb the influence of money in politics. Read the Brennan Center'statement.
Top Constitutional scholars launch a new jurisprudence to curb the rise of unfettered money in politics post-Citizens United. What is next for the First Amendment? And how can we advance a vision of the Constitution as a charter for a vibrant, participatory democracy?
In the U.S. Supreme Court case, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, five justices ruled that corporations and unions had a constitutional right to spend unlimited sums in elections, and in so doing overturned decades of precedent and dozens of laws. The ruling earned banner headlines, a sharp State of the Union rebuke, and public disapproval hovering near 80 percent in the polls. In the 2010 election that followed, independent spending spiked, much of it done secretly. The decision ranks among the Court’s most controversial and consequential.
This volume of essays, which is cosponsored with the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law, is an attempt to map out the complex labyrinth that led to Citizens United, and to explore where this decision may lead. The chapters in it arose from a symposium sponsored by the Brennan Centers just nine weeks after the Citizens United decision was announced.
About the book: Erwin Chemerinsky, Dean of UC Irvine School of Law and author of The Conservative Assault on the Constitution:
“A brilliant collection of essays on one of the most important contemporary constitutional issues: when can and should the government be able to regulate campaign spending? … If there is to be a new jurisprudence in this area, this book is likely its foundation.”
About the conference that sparked the book: Stanley Fish, The New York Times:
“A-list First Amendment scholars … As a result of what had been said and proposed, something in the world might actually change.”
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