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Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission

Docket No. Op. Below Argument Opinion Vote Author Term
08-205 Dist. Ct. for D.C. Sep 9, 2009 Jan 21, 2010 5-4 Kennedy OT 2008

Holding: Political spending is a form of protected speech under the First Amendment, and the government may not keep corporations or unions from spending money to support or denounce individual candidates in elections. While corporations or unions may not give money directly to campaigns, they may seek to persuade the voting public through other means, including ads, especially where these ads were not broadcast.

Judgment: Reversed, 5-4, in an opinion by Justice Anthony Kennedy on January 21, 2010. in a 5-4 decision with an opinion written by Justice Kennedy. Justice Stevens dissented, joined by Justices Ginsburg, Breyer, and Sotomayor.

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