Erick Cordero, Mat-Su Valley School Board member didn't need Coke or McDonalds or BP or Chimo Guns or whatever to get him elected in 2009. We'll see how the local elections are effected by Thursday's dreadful U.S. Supreme Court decision in 2010, though.
Of course the decision is going to have far mor effect on bigger races - for the U.S. Congress and Senate, for State governorships, and for President. As if corporations don't have enough power already, eh?
Glenn Greenwald has an excellent contrarian view post up on this decision:
Ultimately, I think the free speech rights burdened by campaign finance laws are often significantly under-stated. I understand and sympathize with the argument that corporations are creatures of the state and should not enjoy the same rights as individuals. And one can't help but note the vile irony that Muslim "War on Terror" detainees have been essentially declared by some courts not to be "persons" under the Constitution, whereas corporations are.
But the speech restrictions struck down by Citizens United do not only apply to Exxon and Halliburton; they also apply to non-profit advocacy corporations, such as, say, the ACLU and Planned Parenthood, as well as labor unions, which are genuinely burdened in their ability to express their views by these laws. I tend to take a more absolutist view of the First Amendment than many people, but laws which prohibit organized groups of people -- which is what corporations are -- from expressing political views goes right to the heart of free speech guarantees no matter how the First Amendment is understood. Does anyone doubt that the facts that gave rise to this case -- namely, the government's banning the release of a critical film about Hillary Clinton by Citizens United -- is exactly what the First Amendment was designed to avoid? And does anyone doubt that the First Amendment bars the government from restricting the speech of organizations composed of like-minded citizens who band together in corporate form to work for a particular cause?
image - Erick Cordero