Corporate Free Speech Upheld

June 28, 2012

In addition to several high-profile decisions coming out of the Supreme Court in the last week was one that has broad implications on corporate free speech.

On June 25, in American Tradition Partnership v. Bullock, the Supreme Court struck down a Montana state law providing that a “corporation may not make . . . an expenditure in connection with a candi­date or a political committee that supports or opposes a candidate or a political party.” However, in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, the Court struck down a similar federal law, holding that “political speech does not lose First Amendment protection simply because its source is a corporation.”

The Court decided that the holding of Citizens United applies to the Montana state law stating that “[t]here can be no serious doubt that it does.”  Four justices dissented.

To read the opinion (and dissents), click here.