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Correct the Citizens United mess | LETTER TO THE EDITOR
To the editor:
The U.S. Supreme Court now has a chance to fix the enormous mistake it made in the Citizens United decision two years ago. A Montana case challenging that decision has just been appealed back to the court (American Tradition Partnership v. Bullock).
The Citizens United case said that corporations, as “people,” have a free speech right to spend unlimited sums of money to influence our elections. Corporations, however, are not “people” recognized by the Constitution, and the right to free speech should never have been extended to them.
Since money clearly determines the outcome in the vast majority of our elections, corporations, with their almost limitless supply of money, can always outspend real people and thereby literally and unfairly buy elections.
Unless the damage wrought by the Citizens United decision is undone, democracy, as we have known it, is finished.
Polls show that 80 percent of Americans want the Citizens United decision overturned. Hence, if the Supreme Court really wants to do the right thing, it can reflect the will of the people and use this opportunity to correct the political mess it has created.
MARSHALL F. GOLDBERG