October 9, 2013
The Supreme Court heard arguments this week in an important case challenging campaign finance laws, which limit political speech.
Current law imposes restrictions not only on contributions to individual candidates but also on total contributions, Heritage Foundation legal expert Hans von Spakovsky explains in Human Events:
Federal law limits the individual contributions that can be made to $2,600 per federal candidate per election, although that limit is indexed for inflation. But there is also an aggregate limit on the total amount of contributions that an individual can give to candidates. That limit is based on the two-year federal election cycle and currently stands at $48,600. . .
These aggregate limits essentially punish Americans for being too vigorous in their advocacy. They prohibit a person from exercising his constitutional right to make a contribution to a candidate or political party that shares his ideological views just because he has already made “too many” other constitutionally-protected contributions to other candidates.
The Heritage Guide to the Constitution explains why campaign finance laws run afoul of the First Amendment.
Do you think the Supreme Court should uphold these government restrictions on political speech?