Another win for the Koch Brothers and other “super donors” as the United States Supreme Court strikes down limits on individual contributions to political campaigns. The high court concluded that to limit financial contributions is to limit free speech. The limit of dollars one can contribute to a single campaign remains capped at $5,200.
This issue of dollars equals speech has been long fought over. It is the opinion of many that this most recent ruling amplifies the ‘free speech’ of the rich, while muffling the speech of the less fortunate.
Justice Antonin Scalia argues that an estimated spend value of $3.5 million per wealthy donor pales in comparison to the amount of money spent on elections through PACs, Political Action Committees. For this reason, the limit of money that could be spread across all candidates should have no boundary.
During a live interview Republican Senator Mitch McConnell lauded the decision, stating that it “enable more citizens to be involved, more citizens to contribute to the candidate they believe in. That’s good for America.” However, according to the AP, this ruling only affects 646 individuals, out of millions, who maxed out their political contribution limit, the Koch Brothers being 2 of them.
It’s fitting that Charles Koch wrote an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal in reaction to recent criticisms the Koch brothers had been facing causing pundits to take to Twitter, some in support, some ripping apart the article.
Charles Koch said his engagement in the political process started “only in the past decade.” False. http://t.co/9rAGlmPloL
— PolitiFact (@PolitiFact) April 3, 2014
Koch thinks his WSJ op ed good. Actually, it’s as whiny, insecure and platitudinous as other billionaire bullies. http://t.co/XSERqLGWUk
— Jonathan Alter (@jonathanalter) April 4, 2014
Noted: The American left had a more visceral reaction to Charles Koch’s WSJ op-ed than they did to Putin’s NYT op-ed.
— RB (@RBPundit) April 3, 2014
While the Koch op-ed is a reaction to a different issue, the fact remains that the Koch brothers, and 644 other wealthy donors can now write as many $5,200 checks as they please.
The flood of cash into political elections began with the Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. FEC ruling of 2010 which prohibits restriction of political contributions by corporations, labor unions and/or associations leading some in politics to conclude that the Koch Brothers spearheaded suit shut down the government during the October closure of government.
It’s tough to say how this new political campaign contribution ruling by the Supreme Court will affect upcoming elections, but it’s another win for the wealthy, such as the Koch Brothers.