Statement From A.G. Schneiderman On Supreme Court Decision Applying Citizens United To States

WASHINGTON – The following statement can be attributed to New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman in response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision today in American Tradition Partnership v. Bullock, which applies the Citizens United ruling to allow unlimited corporate spending in state and local elections.

“We are disappointed by today’s decision to strike down Montana’s law regulating corporate spending in campaigns for state and local offices, particularly because the Court invalidated the law without receiving full briefing or hearing oral argument. The decision gives short shrift to States’ vital interests in protecting their democratic processes and institutions from the threats posed by unlimited corporate spending in campaigns. It also ignores the national experience since the Court decided Citizens United v. FEC two years ago, which has allowed corporations and billionaires to flood millions of dollars to candidates through Super PACs whose independence is a legal fiction. The application of Citizens United to state and local elections will be disastrous for the integrity of our democracy.”

In May, Attorney General Schneiderman led a bipartisan coalition of 22 states and the District of Columbia in a brief arguing the states have a compelling interest in regulating corporate spending in state and local elections, and that the Court should not automatically invalidate state campaign finance laws without a full hearing.

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