James Bopp is a white-haired lawyer who belongs to Terre Haute, Indiana. He is going to appearing before a federal judges panel in order to argue that his client named Citizens United, should be allowed to air the movie, “Hillary: The Movie.” This will be on the on-demand TV and will be aired during the Democratic presidential primaries. This movie has been produced by Citizens United. It shows that Hillary Clinton is a “European socialist” as well as a ruthless politician.
But the Federal Election Commission did not allow Citizens United to air this film during primary season, as this would be like a 90-minute campaign ad but without disclosing who has paid for it. But James Bopp argued in court that the movie was just like any other 60 Minutes movie. Hence its creators, Citizens United should be awarded First Amendment protections.
This is the US District Court Judge, Royce Lamberth, refused it. But two years later, Supreme Court has reversed this ruling. Many arguments of Bopp are being agreed to now. Now it maintains that campaign spending can be considered as a form of speech. Hence it has to be protected by the First Amendment. Now, this protection is being extended to corporations, and that would include Citizens United too. This way the corporations would have First Amendment rights that would be similar to those which are available to average voters. In this way, it will help them to spend money in order to support or defeat any specific candidates, and that will be considered as constitutional.
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Bopp has worked for many years to build Citizens United. It is meant to remove the campaign-finance regulations. But he is not done yet. He is 63 years old and still pursuing all challenges in order to dismantle all facets that are related to campaign-finance regulation.
He maintains that his work is designed to highlight the conflict which is inherent here. While restricting the money flowing into the political system, it is not necessary to limit free speech too. In this quest, he has several allies that include Citizens United, ACLU advocates, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, besides the AFL-CIO.
In this particular case according to usatoday.com, it became difficult to prove that the government had any interest in prosecuting a person who had aired a political film on TV. In the Supreme Court, it was even argued that in this way, a book on any candidate could be theoretically banned as it can be considered as an illegal advertisement.
The consequences of Citizens United are much beyond protecting such books and movies. It has allowed unlimited spending of corporates in elections without any major public disclosure.
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