(This diary was originally posted as a comment on the Wall Street Journal’s website.)
Chief Justice Roberts’ concurrence with the majority opinion in Citizens United is extraordinarily simple.
“-the Act violates the First Amendment, because it prohibits political speech.”
(The “Act” is of course the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002(BCRA))
No prohibition of political speech! And obviously this simple principle applies most directly to the public domain, like public streets and the airwaves. I can wave a sign on the street and corporations can advertise on TV, and so could I, if only I could afford $100K (or more!) per minute to “speak.”
But what I can afford is a can of spray paint, and the facade of the Supreme Court Building, so beautifully designed by Cass Gilbert in the Beaux Arts style in 1932, still belongs to the public, in spite of so much determined effort by Republicans to privatize everything in Washington.
And according to the simple principle so clearly enunciated by Chief Justice Roberts in his concurring opinion, no law can prohibit my “political speech” in the public domain, and in particular, on the facade of the Supreme Court, expressed in flaming orange letters 10 feet high.
“CLARENCE THOMAS IS A MORON!”
“ANTONIN SCALIA IS A TORTURE-PIG AND PERVERT!”
Orange letters 10 feet high!
“DICK CHENEY SHOULD BE HANGED FOR WAR-CRIMES!”
And I’m sure that every reader and employee of the Wall Street Journal will support my “political speech” on the facade of the Supreme Court, because Chief Justice Roberts is always right (FAR RIGHT!) and no law can prohibit “political speech” in the public domain!