The Democracy We Left Behind in Greece and McCutcheon

17 Pages Posted: 4 Aug 2014 Last revised: 20 Oct 2014

Date Written: July 18, 2014

Abstract

The U.S. Supreme Court used to regularly police the line between political and economic spheres and the line between Church and State. The Court in 2014 abandoned both posts. As evidenced by McCutcheon v. FEC, the Supreme Court is not protecting democracy from creeping oligarchy served up one campaign contribution at a time. As evidenced by Town of Greece v. Galloway, the Supreme Court is not protecting democracy from creeping theocracy served up one public prayer at a time. In both areas of First Amendment law (Free Speech and Establishment Clause), the Court feigns neutrality when it is really picking sides and the side that the Court picks is the one that already has the most power. This short essay will explore how the modern Court’s Establishment Clause jurisprudence parallels its campaign finance jurisprudence and how both have the potential to create a privileged class and a second class.

Keywords: campaign finance, poltical contributions, freedom of religion, church and state, First Amendment, Supreme Court, jurispurdence, public prayer, elections, money in politics, millionaires amendment, aggregate contribution limits, Justice O'Connor, establishment clause, free speech clause

JEL Classification: D72, P16, P26

Suggested Citation

Torres-Spelliscy, Ciara, The Democracy We Left Behind in Greece and McCutcheon (July 18, 2014). 89 New York University Law Review 112 (2014); Stetson University College of Law Research Paper No. 2014-4. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2468137 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2468137

Ciara Torres-Spelliscy (Contact Author)

Stetson University College of Law ( email )

1401 61st Street South
Gulfport, FL 33707
United States

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