plutocrats united campaign money the supreme court and the distortion of american elections

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Plutocrats United

Author : Richard L. Hasen
ISBN : 9780300216745
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 70. 26 MB
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Campaign financing is one of today’s most divisive political issues. The left asserts that the electoral process is rife with corruption. The right protests that the real aim of campaign limits is to suppress political activity and protect incumbents. Meanwhile, money flows freely on both sides. In Plutocrats United, Richard Hasen argues that both left and right avoid the key issue of the new Citizens United era: balancing political inequality with free speech. The Supreme Court has long held that corruption and its appearance are the only reasons to constitutionally restrict campaign funds. Progressives often agree but have a much broader view of corruption. Hasen argues for a new focus and way forward: if the government is to ensure robust political debate, the Supreme Court should allow limits on money in politics to prevent those with great economic power from distorting the political process.

Buying The Vote

Author : Robert E. Mutch
ISBN : 9780199340002
Genre : History
File Size : 23. 37 MB
Format : PDF
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"Campaign finance reform has always been motivated by a definition of democracy that does not count corporations as citizens and holds that self-government works best by reducing political inequality. In the early years of the twentieth century, Congress recognized the strength of these principles by prohibiting corporations from making campaign contributions, passing a disclosure law, and setting limits on campaign expenditures. These reforms were not controversial at the time, but conservative opposition to them appeared in the 1970s. That opposition was well represented in the Supreme Court, which has rolled back reform by granting First Amendment rights to corporations and declaring the goal of reducing political inequality to be unconstitutional. Buying the Vote analyzes the rise and decline of campaign finance reform by tracking changes in the way presidential campaigns have been funded since the late nineteenth century, and changes in the debate over how to reform fundraising practices. A close examination of major Supreme Court decisions shows how the Court has fashioned a new and profoundly inegalitarian redefinition of American democracy"--

The Supreme Court And Election Law

Author : Richard Hasen
ISBN : 9780814736913
Genre : Law
File Size : 53. 97 MB
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In the first comprehensive study of election law since the Supreme Court decided Bush v. Gore, Richard L. Hasen rethinks the Court’s role in regulating elections. Drawing on the case files of the Warren, Burger, and Rehnquist courts, Hasen roots the Court’s intervention in political process cases to the landmark 1962 case, Baker v. Carr. The case opened the courts to a variety of election law disputes, to the point that the courts now control and direct major aspects of the American electoral process. The Supreme Court does have a crucial role to play in protecting a socially constructed “core” of political equality principles, contends Hasen, but it should leave contested questions of political equality to the political process itself. Under this standard, many of the Court’s most important election law cases from Baker to Bush have been wrongly decided.

Unfit For Democracy

Author : Stephen E. Gottlieb
ISBN : 9780814733011
Genre : Law
File Size : 61. 69 MB
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Asked if the country was governed by a republic or a monarchy, Benjamin Franklin replied, “A republic, if you can keep it.” Since its founding, Americans have worked hard to nurture and protect their hard-won democracy. And yet few consider the role of constitutional law in America’s survival. In Unfit for Democracy, Stephen Gottlieb argues that constitutional law without a focus on the future of democratic government is incoherent—illogical and contradictory. Approaching the decisions of the Roberts Court from political science, historical, comparative, and legal perspectives, Gottlieb highlights the dangers the court presents by neglecting to interpret the law with an eye towards preserving democracy. A senior scholar of constitutional law, Gottlieb brings a pioneering will to his theoretical and comparative criticism of the Roberts Court. The Roberts Court decisions are not examined in a vacuum but instead viewed in light of constitutional politics in India, South Africa, emerging Eastern European nations, and others. While constitutional decisions abroad have contributed to both the breakdown and strengthening of democratic politics, decisions in the Roberts Court have aggravated the potential destabilizing factors in democratic governments. Ultimately, Unfit for Democracy calls for an interpretation of the Constitution that takes the future of democracy seriously. Gottlieb warns that the Roberts Court’s decisions have hurt ordinary Americans economically, politically, and in the criminal process. They have damaged the historic American melting pot, increased the risk of anti-democratic paramilitaries, and clouded the democratic future.

Corruption In America

Author : Zephyr Teachout
ISBN : 9780674745087
Genre : Law
File Size : 39. 60 MB
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When Louis XVI gave Ben Franklin a diamond-encrusted snuffbox, the gift troubled Americans: it threatened to corrupt him by clouding his judgment. By contrast, in 2010 the Supreme Court gave corporations the right to spend unlimited money to influence elections. Zephyr Teachout shows that Citizens United was both bad law and bad history.

Capitalism V Democracy

Author : Timothy K. Kuhner
ISBN : 9780804791588
Genre : Law
File Size : 82. 63 MB
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As of the latest national elections, it costs approximately $1 billion to become president, $10 million to become a Senator, and $1 million to become a Member of the House. High-priced campaigns, an elite class of donors and spenders, superPACs, and increasing corporate political power have become the new normal in American politics. In Capitalism v. Democracy, Timothy Kuhner explains how these conditions have corrupted American democracy, turning it into a system of rule that favors the wealthy and marginalizes ordinary citizens. Kuhner maintains that these conditions have corrupted capitalism as well, routing economic competition through political channels and allowing politically powerful companies to evade market forces. The Supreme Court has brought about both forms of corruption by striking down campaign finance reforms that limited the role of money in politics. Exposing the extreme economic worldview that pollutes constitutional interpretation, Kuhner shows how the Court became the architect of American plutocracy. Capitalism v. Democracy offers the key to understanding why corporations are now citizens, money is political speech, limits on corporate spending are a form of censorship, democracy is a free market, and political equality and democratic integrity are unconstitutional constraints on money in politics. Supreme Court opinions have dictated these conditions in the name of the Constitution, as though the Constitution itself required the privatization of democracy. Kuhner explores the reasons behind these opinions, reveals that they form a blueprint for free market democracy, and demonstrates that this design corrupts both politics and markets. He argues that nothing short of a constitutional amendment can set the necessary boundaries between capitalism and democracy.

The First Amendment And The Business Corporation

Author : Ronald J. Colombo
ISBN : 9780199335671
Genre : Law
File Size : 69. 33 MB
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The role of the business corporation in modern society is a controversial one. Some fear and object to the use of corporate power and influence over governments, legislation, and culture. Others view the corporation as an opportunity to harness the private initiative of like-minded individuals to further important goals and objectives in common. A flashpoint in this controversy has been the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Campaign Finance

Author : Robert E. Mutch
ISBN : 9780190274719
Genre : History
File Size : 23. 25 MB
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In 2015, well over half of the money contributed to the presidential race came from roughly 350 families. The 100 biggest donors gave as much as 2 million small donors combined. Can we still say we live in a democracy if a few hundred rich families provide a disproportionate shares of campaign funds? Congress and the courts are divided on that question, with conservatives saying yes and liberals saying no. The debate is about the most fundamental of political questions: how we define democracy and how we want our democracy to work. The debate may ultimately be about political theory, but in practice it is conducted in terms of laws, regulations, and court decisions about super PACs, 527s, 501(c)(4)s, dark money, small donors, public funding, corporate contributions, the Federal Election Commission, and the IRS. Campaign Finance: What Everyone Needs to Know? explains those laws, regulations, and Supreme Court decisions, from Buckley v. Valeo to Citizens United, asking how they fit into the larger discussion about how we want our democracy to work.

New Directions In Interest Group Politics

Author : Matt Grossmann
ISBN : 9781134068951
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 80. 82 MB
Format : PDF
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Reflecting cutting edge scholarship but written for undergraduates, New Directions in Interest Group Politics will help students think critically about influence in the American political system. There is no shortage of fear about "the special interests" in American political debate, but reliable information about what interest groups do, who they represent, and how they influence government is often lacking. This volume, comprised of original essays by leading scholars, is designed to summarize and explain contemporary research that helps address popular questions and concerns, making studies accessible to undergraduate students and providing facts to butress informed debate. The book covers the mobilization of interest groups, their activities, and their influence. Each chapter briefly reviews research on a central question of scholarship before focusing on a particular empirical project designed to shed light on the topic. Rather than simply providing a descriptive overview, the chapters are designed to foster critical thinking by getting students to assess the role of interest groups in the American political system and supplying evidence of their effects. Importantly, a set of web resources associated with the book offer instructions for research and writing assignments. Students will be able to collect and analyze data on campaign finance, lobbying, and interest group involvement in governance. The eResource website includes materials for several classroom simulations, such as an interest group legislative battle, a Netroots convention, and a rule-making process. As they read about key questions in democratic government and current research trends, students can practice serving as interest group activists and conduct original research on topics that most interest them.

Behind The Ballot Box

Author : Douglas J. Amy
ISBN : 0275965864
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 45. 3 MB
Format : PDF
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Amy provides readers with all the relevant information needed to analyze and to choose from various voting system options. He brings together information and analysis about the full range of voting systems. The book is "one-stop-shopping" for those interested in learning more about voting systems and how to choose among them.

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