Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Campaign Finance Law May Have A Loophole

No, No, NO, NO!!!!

Yesteray, the Supreme Court issued a short, unsigned, unamimous decision vacating a lower court ruling in the Wisconcin Right to Life case. In essence, the Court said that the McConnell decision did not preclude "as applied" challenges to the use of issue advertising that may look like electioneering communications.

But here is the Washington Post, once again, referring to the decision as creating a loophole. Since when did political speech become a loophole?

All this Supreme Court ruling did was kick the case back to the three judge district court and tell them to rule on whether the advertisment, which dealt with asking people in Wisconsin to contact Senators Kohl and Feingold and tell them not to filibuster judicial nominations, was a legitimate issue ad or an electioneering communication. The problem was that at the time of the ad, less than 60 days remained until the general election, in which Senator Feingold was a candidate.

Without a doubt, the courts are going to be asked to rule on these questions a lot and the case will return to the Supreme Court sometime soon.

But I have HAD it with the media calling political speech a loophole--after all, the thing that lets the media talk incessantly about candidates and campaigns is a "loophole."

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