Five Million Dollars Worth Of Free Speech
Published 3:23 pm Tuesday, January 31, 2012
All Americans have the constitutional right of free speech, but rich Americans can buy themselves a whole lot more than the average citizen.
The impact of the Supreme Court's landmark campaign finance reform ruling, which opened the donation floodgates, was dramatically illustrated last month when a millionaire American provided stimulus to a Newt Gingrich campaign in dire need of being bailed out.
Five million dollars were contributed to a “super pac” that supports Mr. Gingrich, basically shoring up his campaign at a critical moment.
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That $5 million is 1,000 times the $5,000 that the millionaire would have been able to contribute directly to the Gingrich campaign.
The Supreme Court based its ruling on free speech and the unconstitutionality of placing limits upon it, perceiving campaign contributions as a form of speech.
Five million dollars is a lot of free speech.
And it certainly impacted the presidential campaign by boosting Mr. Gingrich in the GOP primary battle when he might have been on the verge of dropping out.
What about the rest of us?
How many presidential candidates have you to thank for keeping their White House ambitions alive?
That's what I thought.