Free Speech For People Defends Contribution Limits on Political Equality Grounds

Free Speech For People is continuing to help defend Montana’s existing campaign contribution limits under fire from some of the same activists who served as architects of the Supreme Court’s infamous 2010 Citizens United v. FEC decision.

On October 5, 2016, Free Speech For People filed a “friend of the court” brief to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, arguing that Montana’s campaign contribution limits should be upheld to protect the constitutional promise of political equality for all.

Joining Free Speech For People in the filing of this brief are: the Honorable James C. Nelson, a retired Justice of the Montana Supreme Court and a member of Free Speech For People’s Board of Directors; the Indian Law Resource Center; the American Independent Business Alliance, and the American Sustainable Business Council.

Background

In Lair v. Motl, plaintiffs allege that Montana’s campaign contribution limits are unconstitutionally low and violate the First Amendment. The case, which was filed in September 2011, is now back before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, following a federal district court ruling striking down the state’s longstanding limits. For further explanation on this ruling, click here.

On June 19, 2015 Free speech For People submitted an amicus brief before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in Lair v. Motl, a challenge to Montana’s campaign contribution limits. Plaintiffs (represented by James Bopp, an architect of the Citizens United ruling) allege that these longstanding limits are unconstitutionally low and violate the First Amendment. We argue that these limits are necessary to protect the constitutional promise of political equality for all, regardless of access to wealth. We were joined on this brief by former Montana Supreme Court Justice James Nelson (a member of our Legal Advisory Committee), the American Independent Business Alliance, and the American Sustainable Business Council.

On May 26, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued a ruling sending the case back to the federal trial court for another review.

Comments are closed.