I haven’t yet commented on this:
The Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down decades-long limits on how much individuals can make in combined contributions to political campaigns, another step in the court’s steady reversal of Watergate-era rules that were adopted to curb the influence of big money in American politics.
But the court’s majority — reinforcing the concept that political spending is the equivalent of political speech — said First Amendment rights allow citizens to contribute the legal maximum to as many individual political candidates as they please. The justices nullified the government’s aggregate limit, which had been set at $123,200 for federal elections.
“Money in politics may at times seem repugnant to some, but so too does much of what the First Amendment vigorously protects,” Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. wrote in the majority opinion.
“If the First Amendment protects flag burning, funeral protests, and Nazi parades — despite the profound offense such spectacles cause — it surely protects political campaign speech despite popular opposition.”
There’s a difference that Roberts doesn’t want to see:
When the preferences of interest groups and the affluent are held constant, it just doesn’t matter what average folks think about a policy proposal. When average citizens are opposed, there’s a 30 percent chance of passage. When average citizens are wildly in favor, there’s still only a 30 percent chance of passage. Conversely, the odds of passage go from zero when most of the affluent are opposed to more than 50 percent when most of the affluent are in favor.
Money affects how our representatives vote, allowing some people to donate more means I have less say in how our government is run. And this really is a tiny share of the population:
The ruling appears to mostly benefit a small pool of the wealthiest donors: During the 2012 election, only 644 donors — including hedge fund and private equity managers — hit the donation limit to federal candidates and committees, according to an analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics.
Oligarchy here we come.