Court judgment places responsibility in our hands
The Supreme Court sent shockwaves throughout the political world with Thursday’s landmark decision to strike down laws that regulate the amount of money that corporations can donate to individuals’ campaigns.
Thursday’s ruling, which declared that the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 violated free speech rights, also gave corporations free reign to spend as much as a want to endorse or contest candidates for president and Congress.
Therefore, expect a larger-than-usual influx of corporate cash to flow into campaigns during the next several months as members of the House and Senate prepare for what many anticipate to be hotly contested midterm elections.
That also means there will be an increase in the number of annoying political advertisements shown on television. People will probably have a harder time sorting the truth from misrepresentation.
Many people have already voiced their frustration over the Supreme Court’s ruling through blogs and message boards. Many others have shown support for the decision.
But perhaps this ruling will prove to be beneficial in the long run.
It might help motivate people to actually learn about candidates and their platforms before heading to the polls, and it may force candidates to campaign harder since they will have less control over the messages that are conveyed.
The general electorate doesn’t spend enough time studying the candidates and the issues leading up to the day of the election, often relying on word-of-mouth when it comes to making their decisions.
Some people simply vote for the candidate they like the most.
Candidates do as much as they can to make themselves likable to the public, even if it means playing more to the crowd instead of taking a strong stance on the issues. Some of them simply play on people’s ignorance.
This might become harder to do if people were motivated to become informed about the issues.
The increase in corporate spending in campaigns will give people all kinds of messages to sort through. One can only hope that people will do more of their own research instead of relying on advertisements as their primary source for information.