Supreme Court Empowers Foreign Governments to Sway Federal Elections?

Friday, January 22, 2010 at 3:55 pm

That’s the warning coming today from the folks at the Center for Public Integrity, who caution that the recent High Court decision empowering corporations to spend unlimited sums on federal election ads could also have the unintended consequence of ending the ban on foreigners buying influence over U.S. elections. Some foreign companies, the authors write, are owned by foreign governments and also have U.S. subsidiaries. The result?

One prominent example is CITGO Petroleum Company — once the American-born Cities Services Company, but purchased in 1990 by the Venezuelan government-owned Petróleos de Venezuela S.A. The Citizens United ruling could conceivably allow Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who has sharply criticized both of the past two U.S. presidents, to spend government funds to defeat an American political candidate, just by having CITGO buy TV ads bashing his target.

And it’s not just CPI that’s concerned about that possibility.

In his dissent in Citizens United, Justice John Paul Stevens cautioned that the decision “would appear to afford the same protection to multinational corporations controlled by foreigners as to individual Americans.”

And here we were worried that the biggest threats to American democracy, post-decision, were AT&T and Goldman Sachs.



Comment posted January 22, 2010 @ 7:07 pm

America-We're All Beatrice Now!

uberVU - social comments
Trackback posted January 22, 2010 @ 9:26 pm

Social comments and analytics for this post…

This post was mentioned on Twitter by manyko2: RT @TWI_news: Supreme Court Empowers Foreign Governments to Sway Federal Elections?

“US Supreme Court Prohibits Suppression of Corporate Free Speech : Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 558 US ___ (2010) :” and related posts | Top USA News
Pingback posted January 23, 2010 @ 12:00 am

[...] Supreme Court Empowers Foreign Governments to Sway Federal Elections? - The Washington Independent [...]

Comment posted January 23, 2010 @ 12:07 am

America-We're All Beatrice Now!

SCOTUS Decision Allows Foreign Influence of U.S. Elections | Progressive Nation
Pingback posted January 23, 2010 @ 1:39 pm

[...] Supreme Court Empowers Foreign Governments to Sway Federal Elections? « TWI. Related Posts:Welcome to America, Inc.Is America A Joke? No.Orly Taitz Smacked Down: Birther [...]

Links from the Weekend « Gerry Canavan
Pingback posted January 24, 2010 @ 8:03 pm

[...] Greenwald has a balanced piece largely in favor of the Citizens United v. FEC. Others are saying this decision may give foreign multinational corporations the right to participate in the American p… Citizens United is by all appearances the first major domestic political crisis of the ’10s, [...]

Mercedes Benz- Sway | Mercedes Benz Automotive Marque
Pingback posted January 30, 2010 @ 1:18 pm

[...] Supreme Court Empowers Foreign Governments to Sway Federal … [...]

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.