Patt Morrison for June 25, 2012

The Supreme Court upholds Citizens United ruling, but what does the decision mean for states' rights?

Senate Democrats Announce New Legislation To Counter "Citizens United" Decision

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U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) arrives at a news conference at the U.S. Capitol March 21, 2012 in Washington, DC. A group of Democratic senators held a news conference to announce new legislation "to blunt the worst effects" of the Supreme Court's Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision.

The Supreme Court doubled down on its monumental Citizens United case, and said that states cannot limit corporate spending on elections. Montana’s law had been on the books for a century, crafted in an era when copper mining money literally bought a U.S. Senate seat (until the Senate refused to seat the Montana copper baron because of evidence of bribery.)

Today’s 5-4 ruling reversed Montana’s law and Montana’s supreme court, and it means Citizens United is unlikely to be reconsidered for the foreseeable future. Montanans are talking about taking this to the ballot.

Patt checks in with one longtime Republican supporter of Montana’s law, which is blurring traditional political lines, and has garnered significant Republican support.


Verner Bertlesen, former Republican secretary of state, Montana

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