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political April 13th, 2016 9:09pm

Inspired by #JennaBrklyn: Hypothetically, SCOTUS reached the reverse position in Citizens United vs FEC. SCOTUS ruled that corporations are not people; constitutional rights are not applicable. Can Congress now restrict corporate media publications?

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badattitude no place like home
04/17/16 9:18 am

I could be wrong, but I think that If corporations are not people then you can't sue them in court as a person for anything. That's why they ruled that way. Can't have it both ways. I think so anyway. Am I right?

bethanyq Ess Eff
04/13/16 8:29 pm

1. Congress already can restrict media publications as long as those restrictions don't go so far as to infringe on the first amendment.

2. Citizens United didn't hold that corporations are people. Corporations have been legally considered people for generations. How do you think a corporate entity can sue or be sued?

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political Georgia
04/13/16 9:01 pm

I think you misunderstood this question. This is pretending that the ruling opinion was reached.

bethanyq Ess Eff
04/13/16 10:13 pm

My point is that the "reverse" of Citizens United wouldn't be a holding that corporations are not people, unless it would also be a holding that there was no decision appealed from (which would be nonsensical). That question wasn't before the court because corporate personhood was already well established long prior to the decision.

Similarly, the abstract ability of Congress to regulate speech - corporate or otherwise - wasn't in question. The question was whether certain provisions of McCain-Feingold were a valid exercise of that authority.

So unless your question really meant "let's pretend Citizens United actually held totally different things than it held, AND THEN let's pretend it came out the other way," I don't believe I misunderstood anything.

JHawk3205 MD
04/13/16 5:02 pm

Free press covers that. It'd be pretty hard to find a way to argue corporations giving unlimited sums of money would constitute free press vs free speech, and most of those companies aren't even press related..

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political Georgia
04/13/16 5:33 pm

Donating money is easily a form of expression.

JHawk3205 MD
04/13/16 5:50 pm

Expression is more in line with speech than freedom of the press, and I can't think of a viable interpretation, that citizens would agree with, that would somehow make it work. It'd likely be another controversial SC case, but not

JHawk3205 MD
04/13/16 5:51 pm

As much as citizens united/ freedom of speech.

JHawk3205 MD
04/13/16 5:53 pm

And really the question is more about media publications. I don't see how media publications would translate into money. This would mean that the only kind of monetary involvement would be media outlets not charging for campaign

JHawk3205 MD
04/13/16 5:54 pm

Air time, but thatd present an issue with equal access to campaign ads. It's a tough cookie for sure, but as far as what the media outlets put out, publication-wise, it's not likely to be more of an issue than it is now.

caboose2050 Blood Gulch
04/13/16 4:45 pm

Wouldn't they be covered under freedom of the press still.

political Georgia
04/13/16 5:00 pm

Well, you would think corporations donating money would be considered freedom of expression.

caboose2050 Blood Gulch
04/13/16 5:14 pm

But if their not people that wouldn't apply, but freedom of the press would still be there.

political Georgia
04/13/16 5:32 pm

Freedom of the press would only belong to individuals, right?

caboose2050 Blood Gulch
04/13/16 5:51 pm

Freedom of the press is obviously referring to more than individual people.

political Georgia
04/13/16 5:54 pm

What you have to decide is if corporations are or are not a form of business owners..

MediaBlackout Carry on, Carry on.
04/13/16 4:35 pm

Wtf kind of slippery slope are we going down? There will always be ways around donating money to people. Whether it's through buying on of their products, to investing in shows that just happen to have a presidential candidate giving a speech to.

If corporations aren't people, then so aren't unions.

political Georgia
04/13/16 4:56 pm

I'm trying to show liberals how the first amendment is being limited if SCOTUS did
not rule the way that they did.

MediaBlackout Carry on, Carry on.
04/13/16 5:05 pm

Oh, I didn't read who published it. Lol

Liberty 4,032,064
04/13/16 3:59 pm

Yes, the power to restrict speech from people or groups of people would have been enabled had that been the case.

bethanyq Ess Eff
04/13/16 8:56 pm

That power already exists. Citizens United didn't divest Congress of its ability to pass legislation regulating speech. The question isn't whether corporations are people. Ugh, why do people on both sides continue to oversimplify the issue.

Liberty 4,032,064
04/14/16 3:53 am

Well of course they're people, haha. You don't cease to be a person when you do something with other people.

jvc1133 61535
04/13/16 2:57 pm

Idk, Scotus is so screwed I doubt if they can find their ass, with 16 hands throw in Bob's.

TomM
04/13/16 2:23 pm

I think that's kind of given in the poll question. I cannot see how it can be a no.

political Georgia
04/13/16 2:25 pm

I think so too, but some do not think so.

lovesquirt Hawkeyes
04/13/16 2:22 pm

I think they need to write a law that makes the media state that they are presenting facts or opinion.

political Georgia
04/13/16 2:27 pm

That might be a discussion for another time, but I will say that the media will hate that because that will open the gate to a lot of lawsuits.

lovesquirt Hawkeyes
04/13/16 2:32 pm

Can't they just have a little statement before the show and say this portion of our show is opinion and may not be actual fact? Back in the day news was formatted similarly to Democracy Now and simply state and show facts and possibly do an interview. The news used to be trusted.

lovesquirt Hawkeyes
04/13/16 2:35 pm

Okay sorry I took the question as all news media not limited to publications

political Georgia
04/13/16 2:36 pm

I think it indicates how stupid the American people are if they need someone to tell them what is opinion vs a fact. There would be some tricky situations. One news program may spin the facts to benefit the shows point of view. You might say they would have to provide an opposing viewpoint, but the opposing viewpoint might be half-hearted. Bottom line, it would be very hard to regulate, and it would promote more lawsuits which only strangles small business news outlets.

lovesquirt Hawkeyes
04/13/16 2:42 pm

I think you're right. Unfortunately even when the media isn't trying to spin the truth they still often get things wrong.

political Georgia
04/13/16 2:43 pm

That's true. That's wh it's important to do your own research.

political Georgia
04/13/16 2:14 pm

Oh - and if something does not make sense in the question, let me know. I had a very difficult time of fitting this question within the character limits.

lovesquirt Hawkeyes
04/13/16 2:23 pm

Very good question.

political Georgia
04/13/16 2:13 pm

This is the problem with the "corporations are people narrative." The talking point is essential to a lot of liberals in order to side step Constitutional rights. Once you claim corporations do not have constitutional rights, this leads to a very intrusive government.

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