Investigate Intrigues of Supreme Court
Several decades ago, I considered the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) to be the last bastion of American democracy, and therefore, the protector of the republic. Of course, SCOTUS had made some errors; for example, judgments involving black civil rights laws. These false decisions were overturned in subsequent pronouncements.
The Supreme Court (SC) has always been a political football, but starting with the 2000 presidential election, the SC seemed to drift into uncharted waters. In a 5-4 decision, the SC summarily ended a recount of the votes cast in Florida that was ordered by the Florida Supreme Court. Via the same decision, SCOTUS held its own de facto presidential election which declared George W. Bush the new President of the United States; the plurality was five votes to four.
Prior to the 2000 election, the SC started negating the will of the people, via their elected representatives, relative to campaign finance laws intended to level the playing field between average citizens and rich supporters of candidates. In the Buckley v. Valeo case of 1976, the SC declared that money in elections is free speech.
In 2010, the SC unilaterally introduced new issues into the Citizens’ United v. Federal Election Commission (FEC) case that were not raised at the initial hearing, violating the Court’s own procedures. After expanding the issues, SCOTUS heard the case again. The 5 to 4 decision overturned a section of the 2002 Campaign Finance Reform Act that prohibited unions and corporations from spending vast sums of money on campaign advertising in federal and state elections. It also gave corporations a new status, that of a person. This decision opened the floodgates; billions are now expended on national elections, and interfere in the states as well.
This year, the SC in its McCutcheon v. FEC decision wiped out the $117,000 aggregate campaign contribution cap (by an individual) in a two year election cycle. Now that the cap is gone, the wealthy can contribute $2,600 in each election to any and all individual candidates of their choice and $5,000 to any political action committee they choose to support.