Massachusetts

Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance Sues State Over Compelled Speech Requirements

Government demands for irrelevant information violate First Amendment, lawsuit says Alexandria, VA – Today, Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance (MassFiscal), a nonpartisan nonprofit represented by the Institute for Free Speech, will file a federal lawsuit alleging that some Massachusetts campaign finance laws are unconstitutional. Unlike most states, Massachusetts requires ads that name candidates within 90 days of […]

Filed Under: Blog, Newsroom, Press Releases, Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance v. Sullivan, Massachusetts

First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti: Protecting the Right to Hear Others

PDF available here “The inherent worth of the speech in terms of its capacity for informing the public does not depend upon the identity of its source, whether corporation, association, union, or individual.” – First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti, 435 U.S. 765, 777 (1978) Can the government silence speech about an election simply […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, First Amendment, Issues, Jurisprudence & Litigation, Research, Ballot Issue Advocacy, corporate speech, First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti, Supreme Court, First Amendment, Jurisprudence & Litigation, Massachusetts

Massachusetts Businesses and Labor Unions Are Entitled to the Same Free Speech Rights

The ability of businesses and unions to participate in electoral politics has long been a contentious topic, particularly in the years since Citizens United v. FEC. That decision struck down a federal ban on independent expenditures from those entities, but not a ban on direct donations from businesses and unions to candidates and parties (those […]

Filed Under: Blog, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits Press Release/In the News/Blog, Contribution Limits State, Issues, Buckley v. Valeo, Goldwater Institute, Kentucky, Massachusetts

Steyer’s Plan to Challenge Trump is Healthy for Free Speech Environment

In response to Donald Trump’s victory over Hillary Clinton on Election Day, environmental activist and Democratic donor Tom Steyer has promised to continue to spend his vast wealth to combat the President-elect’s energy agenda, which he predicts will threaten his own environmental protection agenda. According to an interview with Reuters, Steyer is willing to spend […]

Filed Under: Blog, AGs United for Clean Power, climate change, Donald Trump, Eric Schneiderman, ExxonMobil, Tom Steyer, U.S. Virgin Islands, Massachusetts, New York

Democratic AGs Double Down on Criminalizing Opposing Views

Last week, Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) penned an op-ed in The Washington Post about the investigations of ExxonMobil by several state attorneys general. The Senators lauded efforts to accuse the oil company of fraud for allegedly advancing skepticism about the impacts of its products on climate change. Despite downplaying these moves […]

Filed Under: Blog, American Legislative Exchange Council, climate change, Competitive Enterprise Institute, Elizabeth Warren, Eric Schneiderman, ExxonMobil, sheldon whitehouse, U.S. Virgin Islands, Massachusetts, New York

Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus and the (Bleak) Future of Statutes that Ban False Statements in Political Campaigns

In this University of Pennsylvania Law Review article, author Margaret H. Zhang assesses the constitutionality of state false statement law statutes in the wake of recent court decisions. As Zhang explains, today’s political candidates must be prepared for mudslinging targeted not just at their professional lives, but also at their private lives, appearance, genealogy, religion, […]

Filed Under: First Amendment, Independent Speech, Jurisprudence & Litigation, Research, SBA List v. Driehaus, False Statement Laws, First Amendment, Independent Speech, Jurisprudence & Litigation, First Amendment, Independent Speech, Jurisprudence & Litigation, Alaska, Colorado, Florida, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee, Utah, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin

The False Heroics of False Statement Laws

When someone suggests prohibiting ‘false statements’ in campaigns, your gut reaction might be to nod your head in agreement. This might come from a belief that people shouldn’t make unkind comments or unfairly criticize candidates. Or, you may think such a ban would promote better-informed voters by preventing the spread of misinformation. While some would […]

Filed Under: Blog, SBA List v. Driehaus, False Statement Laws, Massachusetts, Ohio

Contribution Limits Increase in 15 States and Federally after Citizens United

As this Issue Brief explains, five years after the 2010 Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. FEC, which struck down a federal law on First Amendment grounds banning corporations and labor unions from spending money independently of campaigns to urge voters to support or oppose the candidates of their choice, and the subsequent SpeechNow.org […]

Filed Under: Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits Federal, Contribution Limits Handouts, Contribution Limits State, Contributions & Limits, Handouts (Contribution Limits), Research, Super PACs, Contribution Limits, Contributions & Limits, Alabama, Arizona, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Vermont, Wyoming

Recommendations to Massachusetts Campaign Finance Task Force on Internet Ad Disclaimers and Election Cycle Contribution Limits

December 17, 2014 Mr. Michael Sullivan Massachusetts Office of Campaign and Political Finance John W. McCormack Building One Ashburton Place, Room 411 Boston, MA 02108 Download here… Re:      Recommendations to Massachusetts Campaign Finance Task Force on Internet Ad Disclaimers and Election Cycle Contribution Limits Dear Director Sullivan and members of the Campaign Finance Task Force: […]

Filed Under: Blog, Contribution Limits, Contribution Limits Comments, Contribution Limits Press Release/In the News/Blog, Contribution Limits State, Disclosure Comments, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog, Disclosure State, External Relations Comments and Testimony, Featured Content, Massachusetts

Aggregate Effects of Large-Scale Campaigns on Voter Turnout

In this study, authors Ryan D. Enos, Assistant Professor in the Department of Government at Harvard University, and Anthony Fowler, Assistant Professor in the Harris School of Public Policy Studies at the University of Chicago, assess to what extent political campaigns mobilize voters. Despite the central role of campaigns in American politics and despite many […]

Filed Under: Contributions & Limits, Expenditure, Research, GOTV, Contribution Limits, Expenditure, Contributions & Limits, Expenditure, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Wisconsin

The Center for Competitive Politics is now the Institute for Free Speech.