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McConnell hails Supreme Court campaign spending decision

McConnell hails Supreme Court campaign spending decision

by Joe Arnold

WHAS11.com

Posted on July 8, 2012 at 8:10 AM

LOUISVILLE, Ky (WHAS11) -- While many Republicans are upset with the U.S. Supreme Court for upholding the Obama administration's health care overhaul, the U.S. Senate's top Republican is applauding the high court for another recent decision.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) says the court's rejection of Montana's 100 year old ban on corporate campaign spending law is a victory for free speech. 

"Corporations that own media outlets don't like it because they no longer have an exclusive to who gets to speak and comment about what's going on in public affairs," McConnell told WHAS11.

In striking down the Montana law, the high court affimed its 2010 Citizen United decision which has led to a flood of campaign spending by non-profit groups which do not have to disclose their donors.

Previously, McConnell argued against contribution limits by also endorsing full disclosure.  Now, McConnell says that disclosure is still required on contributions to candidates, parties and Super Pacs, but that contributers to social welfare groups should be able to remain secret.

"What I do have reservations about, however, is going after social welfare organizations that may have political opinions," McConnell said.

The senator cited the landmark 1958 NAACP vs Alabama Supreme Court case in which the high court ruled that the state's requirement that the NAACP supply a membership list was a violation of Due Process and Freedom of Association rights.

"Most contributions are disclosed," he said.  "There is an area of social welfare organizations where I think the federal government - and we've seen it in the Obama administration - they've used the IRS, they've used the FCC, they've used the SEC to try to quiet the voices of their opponents. It really is reminscent of the Nixon administration and the enemies list.  That's the kind of thing that I don't like."

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