The court decisions from "Bank of the United States v. Deveaux" in 1809 which started this whole corporations were citizens thing to "Citizens United v. FEC" in 2010 which expanded their reach; basically has drowned out our speech. The "Buckley v. Valeo" case in 1976 and the 8 or so other decisions inbetween 1809 to 2014; have in my opinion completely silenced our form of free speech when it comes to our government.

If corporations are allowed to "Lobby" for a campaign, or agenda without limits as to how much; it is like comparing $1.00 to $1,000,000.00. There is no comparison. The higher value speaks louder. In doing so it is not allowing the speech of the $1.00 to be heard. Not to mention as a person you are only allowed one vote. As a corporation who may have MANY different business entities; can vote multiple times even though they all may be owned by only one person. Therefor I call for a "Mulligan" of sorts. How is it constitutionally right that one voice is allowed to be louder than others when it comes to our government? How can my voice be measured only by dollars, and not by actual voting?

I know people are trying to legislate amendments to revoke said decisions, and petitions alike. Why is this truly the issue when it comes to corporate speech? Should it be that all forms of speech are really free, or is it that one form is hindered by the speech of another due to a dollar value? What about my right to be heard in government is muted because the rights of corporations money; or speech, has inadvertently silenced my own?

1809 - Bank of the United States v. Deveaux

1844 - Louisville, Cincinnati, and Charleston Railroad v. Letson

1853 - Marshall v. Baltimore and Ohio Railroad

1886 - County of Santa Clara v. Southern Pacific Railroad

1898 - Smyth v. Ames

1906 - Hale v. Henkel

1931 - Russian Volunteer Fleet v. United States

1976 - Buckley v. Valeo

1977 - United States v. Martin Linen Supply

2010 - Citizens United v. FEC

2014 - Burwell v. Hobby Lobby

Comments

gumball's picture
gumball 1 week 2 days ago
#1

The question is not if "Corporations are people", as Thom frames it. The question is if organizations of people have constitutional protections.

From the Move To Amend folks;

Section 1. [Artificial Entities Such as Corporations Do Not Have Constitutional Rights]

The rights protected by the Constitution of the United States are the rights of natural persons only.

Artificial entities established by the laws of any State, the United States, or any foreign state shall have no rights under this Constitution and are subject to regulation by the People, through Federal, State, or local law.

The privileges of artificial entities shall be determined by the People, through Federal, State, or local law, and shall not be construed to be inherent or inalienable.

https://movetoamend.org/wethepeopleamendment

Think about the unintended consequences in this proposal. What would stop the state of Texas from confiscating all the assets of Planned Parenthood within the state? They no longer have 4 amendment rights!

What would stop the state of Kentucky from restricting the Sierra Club from running ads against coal in the state? They no longer have 1st Amendment rights!

"Corporations are not people" may make for a good bumper sticker, but not good policy.

RichL1004's picture
RichL1004 1 week 2 days ago
#2

I agree with your point. It is a slippery slope. What I am proposing is to have a way in which all speech is equal. So if a corporation has 100 "DBA's" (Doing Business As) entities with only 1 owner of them all that now gives that 1 person 100 different votes. Not to mention without a limit on how much "speech" can be contributed to each vote they now have a way to drown out my "speech" by contributing way more than I could afford. So how about if we decided to put a limit on how much one can contribute? It doesn't go against what the courts have decided in regards to corporate "speech", but it does allow for the 1 person 1 vote rule to be more balanced. Again in a perfect world it would be just that easy where no one from anywhere could contribute more that lets say $5.00 to any particular campaign. More importantly what I despise so much about politics is that with as much money being spent to lobby we could have solved so many issues outside of the political world. Again, in a perfect world.

gumball's picture
gumball 1 week 1 day ago
#3
Quote RichL1004:

I agree with your point. It is a slippery slope. What I am proposing is to have a way in which all speech is equal. So if a corporation has 100 "DBA's" (Doing Business As) entities with only 1 owner of them all that now gives that 1 person 100 different votes. Not to mention without a limit on how much "speech" can be contributed to each vote they now have a way to drown out my "speech" by contributing way more than I could afford. So how about if we decided to put a limit on how much one can contribute? It doesn't go against what the courts have decided in regards to corporate "speech", but it does allow for the 1 person 1 vote rule to be more balanced. Again in a perfect world it would be just that easy where no one from anywhere could contribute more that lets say $5.00 to any particular campaign. More importantly what I despise so much about politics is that with as much money being spent to lobby we could have solved so many issues outside of the political world. Again, in a perfect world.

I'm having trouble following your thought process....

Corporations can not give to candidates, only individuals can. The problem comes when corporations (or rich individuals) give large sums to outside advocacy groups that run ads for or against candidates. That is what the Citizen United case was about; challenging a law that prohibited ads for or against a politician X amount of days before an election.

RichL1004's picture
RichL1004 1 week 1 day ago
#4

I apologize for the confusion. Had been up for way too long. Yes I understand that they can only run the ads; in a sense "campaign" for certain issues. This was their way around the whole issue. You are correct. I was thinking of how there could be a resolution to try and limit the political biasses from running those ads. That is what I meant by using the term campaign. I will try to be more careful with my words instead of just a generalized way especially when my generalization is incorrect so thank you for that.

gumball's picture
gumball 1 week 7 hours ago
#5
Quote RichL1004:

I apologize for the confusion. Had been up for way too long. Yes I understand that they can only run the ads; in a sense "campaign" for certain issues. This was their way around the whole issue. You are correct. I was thinking of how there could be a resolution to try and limit the political biasses from running those ads. That is what I meant by using the term campaign. I will try to be more careful with my words instead of just a generalized way especially when my generalization is incorrect so thank you for that.

I'm skeptical of government regulation of political speech. The law in question with the CU case would prohibit the Sierra Club from taking out an ad pointing out that candidate X has a poor record on environmental voting 60 days before an election. Does that not seem to create a 1st amendment issue to you?

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