April 23, 2010
Congress to Respond to Citizens United
Earlier this week, Reps. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) and Mike Castle (R-DE) announced that they reached a bipartisan agreement to move forward with a legislative response to Citizens United v. FEC, the January 21 case that applied the First Amendment to corporations and overturned campaign spending limits on corporations and labor unions. We last posted on that case and a subsequent D.C. Circuit ruling here.
The Blog of the Legal Times reported today that legislation may emerge next week. According to the report, the legislation moves to increase transparency by requiring additional reporting and disclosure (including an "approves this message" statement to go along with campaign communications). (Citizens United itself upheld disclaimer and disclosure requirements.) The legislation will reportedly also limit coordination between a candidate and outside groups on communications that reference a candidate, and restrict certain federal contractors from spending money on elections.
The legislative text isn't yet available, but we'll post it when comes out.
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