WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) – Business-Industry PAC is applauding the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision to strike down overall campaign contribution limits, believing the opinion was the right decision for free enterprise and speech.
U.S. Supreme Court
On Wednesday, the Supreme Court, in case of McCutcheon v. Federal Ethics Commission, struck down aggregate campaign contribution limits, ruling that donors, under the First Amendment, have the right to give the legal maximum to as many federal candidates and political committees as they see fit.
According to a recent press release, BIPAC thinks that in a representative government, citizens should not fear penalty by making their voices heard.
“Campaigns play a very important role in America’s democratic process,” said Gregory S. Casey, president and chief executive officer of BIPAC.
“They educate the public about candidates, therefore allowing citizens to make an informed decision when they vote. If it weren’t for free enterprise and private employers supporting a 27 year-old George Washington in 1759 when he ran for Virginia’s House of Burgesses, would we have had our nation’s first President? It is the right decision for free enterprise and free speech.”
Although Supreme Court decision allows individuals to contribute to as many candidates and committees as they would like, without concern of reaching an overall limit, contribution limits to separate candidates and committees remain unchanged.
The case stems from a challenge brought by Alabama businessman Shaun McCutcheon against the FEC.
Joined by the Republican National Committee, McCutcheon and the RNC questioned whether aggregate limits on the total amount that an individual may contribute to all federal candidates and political committees during a two-year federal election cycle violate the First Amendment, appellate briefs state.
“This case does not involve any challenge to the base limits, which we have previously upheld as serving the permissible objective of combatting corruption,” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote.
“The Government contends that the aggregate limits also serve that objective, by preventing circumvention of the base limits. We conclude however, that the aggregate limits do little, if anything, to address that concern, while seriously restricting participation in the democratic process. The aggregate limits are therefore invalid under the First Amendment.”
For the 2013-2014 biennial limit, the aggregate total is capped at $123,000. The limit includes up to $48,600 in contributions to candidate committees, according to the Federal Ethics Commission.
BIPAC was founded in 1963 as “an independent, bipartisan group” to serve as a political action arm for American business and industry.
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