How Democrats Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Citizens United

January 30, 2014


Four years ago, in his inaugural State of the Union address, President Obama famously shamed the Supreme Court’s five conservative justices for their decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. The court, Obama said, "reversed a century of law that I believe will open the floodgates for special interests—including foreign corporations—to spend without limit in our elections." Democratic lawmakers, activists, operatives, and donors piled on, condemning the ruling as "scandalous," a "disaster," and "bad for American democracy." When a subsequent court decision, nodding to Citizens United, opened the door to super-PACs, a new breed of political committee that can raise and spend unlimited amounts of cash, Obama branded them "a threat to our democracy."

The Obama of 2010 might not recognize the Democratic Party of 2014.

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