The corrupting influence of money is not limited to bribery —
the broader problem is the ability of moneyed interests to put into office those who support their political agendas or financial interests.
In Citizens United, Justice Kennedy cited James Madison in The Federalist in noting that “factions” in American democracy can be “checked” by ensuring that all of them can speak freely and “by entrusting the people to judge what is true and what is false.”
But when outside spending is unlimited,and political speech depends heavily on
access to costly technology and ads,the wealthy can
this fundamental element of democracy
by drowning out those who lack financial resources.
Voters are left to judge well-financed spin, rather than truth and falsehood. Super PACs demonstrate that almost daily.
Until [the Citizens United decision in] 2010, the court wisely held that these effects were a form of corruption in politics.
–New York Times editorial, When Other Voices Are Drowned Out , March 2012