Breaking News: Ninth Circuit Affirms in San Diego Campaign Finance Case, Upholding Constitutionality of Ban on Entity Contributions and One-Year Time Limitation on Candidates Accepting Campaign Contributions; Court Holds Political Parties Have Constitutional Right to Contribute Directly to Candidates

…[Disclosure: I am one of the attorneys for the City in this case.] The opinion reaches a contrary conclusion to Danielczyk on the question of the constitutionality of a ban on non-human entities contributing directly to candidates.  (The federal ban at issue in Danielczyk covers corporations, not all non-human entities.)  Like the Second and Eighth Circuits, but unlike Judge Cacheris’s opinion in Danieczyk, the Court holds itself bound by t…

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The Perverse Holding of Danielczyk

In response to my query in this post, a few readers have said that the opinion means it is unconstitutional to limit the direct contributions of for-profit corporations to candidates, but it remains constitutional under the controlling authority of Beaumont to limit the direct contributions of ideological, non-profit corporations. Of course, as my readers point out, if this is what it means, it is a perverse holding: those groups which should be…

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Appealability of Danielczyk

Given the upcoming 2012 election, it makes sense for the government to seek to appeal this ruling as soon as possible.  An appeal before judgment is an “interlocutory” appeal, and in my earlier post I said I did not know if the government would be able to bring such an appeal. A reader passes along the following: [The order] is appealable under 18 USC 3731, which authorizes government appeals of dismissals of indictments (in whole or…

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Danielczyk – “As Applied to This Case Only” Bunk, Etc.

Judge Catcheris says repeatedly in his order and opinion. that his holding of unconstitutionality applies in this case only  What could he possibly mean? If a corporation made a direct contribution to a candidate in Virginia, could that corporation not defend its actions in reliance on the opinion holding the statute unconstitutional?  How could the law possibly be constitutional as to any other corporation in Virginia under the judge’s ru…

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Breaking News: Judge in Va. Contributions Case Reaffirms Opinion Striking Down Federal Campaign Contribution Limits Law (Danielczyk)

Via Ken Vogel comes word of this order from Judge Cacheris.  This is not what I was expecting. The Court has held unconstitutional a 100-year-old ban on direct corporate campaign contributions to candidates. He has done so in direct contradiction to the Supreme Court’s holding in FEC v. Beaumont, and in contradiction to rulings in the Second Circuit, the Eighth Circuit, and a federal district court in San Diego [that case is on appeal, and…

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Money Quote from Agostini (relevant to Va. contributions case)

In his order suggesting (on the Court’s own motion) reconsideration in Danielczyk in light of Agostini, Judge Cacheris was probably focused on this quotation: We do not acknowledge, and we do not hold, that other courts should conclude our more recent cases have, by implication, overruled an earlier precedent. We reaffirm that “[i]f a precedent of this Court has direct application in a case, yet appears to rest on reasons rejected in…

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Breaking News: Judge Asks for Briefing on Whether He Should Reconsider Holding that Federal Direct Corporate Contribution Ban is Unconstitutional

Last week I wrote the following about a federal district court in Virginia decision holding that the 100-year ban on direct corporate contributions to federal candidates is unconstitutional: I would expect this decision not to stand, or at least to be reconsidered by the judge. The United States Supreme Court in FEC v. Beaumont upheld a ban on corporate contributions in the case of FEC v. Beaumont, and the lower courts that have considered this…

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Some Early News Stories and Reactions to Danielczyk

AP: “Peter Carr, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney in Alexandria, which is prosecuting the case against defendants William P. Danielczyk Jr. and Eugene R. Biagi, said Friday that the office is reviewing the ruling. Prosecutors have the option to appeal the ruling to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond.” The first thing the U.S. attorney should do is move for reconsideration in light of the controlling Supreme Court au…

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Federal District Court, in Criminal Case, Holds That Ban on Direct Corporate Contributions to Candidates is Unconstitutional under Citizens United

Big news broke while the blog was migrating today: A federal district court in Virginia struck down the federal ban on corporate contributions to candidates. You can read the judge’s 52-page opinion in U.S. v. Danielczyk here. The relevant discussion appears on pages 42-46. I would expect this decision not to stand, or at least to be reconsidered by the judge. The United States Supreme Court in FEC v. Beaumont upheld a ban on corporate c…

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