Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer (D) and Lt. Governor John Bohlinger (R) voiced opposition to the Supreme Court decision issued Monday striking down limits on corporate political spending in their state.
"Now, Republicans and Democrats don't always agree on policy matters, but there's one thing we do agree on, and that is corporate money should not influence the outcome of an election," says Bohlinger in a video released on YouTube in response to the ruling.
Schweitzer asserts, "The United States Supreme Court has just told the American people that the facts don't matter when it comes to protecting Montana and the country from corruption of corporate money in our democracy." He later adds, "Corporations are people? I'll believe that when Texas executes one."
HuffPost's Mike Sacks relays background on the case:
Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, decided in January 2010, struck down federal limits on campaign spending by corporations and unions as violations of the First Amendment. Justice Anthony Kennedy, writing on behalf of Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito, reached the bold conclusion that "independent expenditures, including those made by corporations, do not give rise to corruption or the appearance of corruption," and therefore "[n]o sufficient governmental interest justifies limits on the political speech of nonprofit or for-profit corporations."
In December 2011, the Montana Supreme Court disagreed. It found that the state's Gilded Age history of business-driven corruption was sufficient to justify the state's Corrupt Practices Act. Passed by voter referendum in 1912, the law decrees that a "corporation may not make ... an expenditure in connection with a candidate or a political party that supports or opposes a candidate or a political party."
On Monday, the Supreme Court struck down the state's limits on corporate political spending, ending Montana's resistance to Citizens United and effectively expanding the ruling to both state and local elections.
"The fight's not over, says Schweitzer in the clip. "We're going to overrule the Supreme Court with a constitutional amendment, to make it clear that we the people are in charge of America, not we the corporations. Here in the Montana we're putting it on the ballot."
Read the whole story on the Supreme Court ruling issued Monday here.
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