Are corporations people?
It might sound like a simple question, but it’s one the U.S. Supreme Court answered in the affirmative when it handed down its landmark Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision in 2010. That 5-4 ruling struck down a prohibition against certain election communications by nonprofits, corporations, labor unions, and other associations.
The majority opinion declared that such a statute violated the free speech rights of “associations of citizens.” As groups of people, the court essentially ruled that corporations are people, too, and are therefore extended the same First Amendment rights a real person.
Burg Simpson co-founder Alan K. Simpson believe that decision was wrong. So wrong, in fact, that he supports a 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would overturn Citizens United and “restore free and fair elections.”
“I do not take lightly any proposal to amend our Constitution, and I recognize, as did James Madison, that we should do so only on ‘great and extraordinary occasions.’ I believe the nation now faces such an occasion,” Simpson wrote in a Casper Star-Tribune editorial this week.
Simpson disagrees that spending money to buy political ads and fund documentaries is the same as the freedom of speech and that “corporations have the same Constitutional rights as we humans.” He’s not alone, voters in both Colorado and Wyoming overwhelmingly support a 28th Amendment.
Read his column HERE.