BIG MONEY

Obama Blasts Supreme Court

President Obama spoke out today against the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn campaign-finance laws prohibiting corporate and union spending on election ads, calling it “devastating to the public interest.” “The last thing we need to do is hand more influence to the lobbyists in Washington, or more power to the special interests to tip the outcome of elections,” he said in his weekly radio address. The Supreme Court’s narrowly decided ruling of 5-4 is likely to spread well beyond the federal government. Some 24 states have laws that will be affected by the decisions, making major upheavals likely in elections around the country at every level. “One day the Constitution of Colorado is the highest law of the state,” Robert F. Williams, a law professor at Rutgers University told The New York Times. “The next day it’s wastepaper.” Some affected state statutes are deeply ingrained in the political culture—Montana's campaign-finance laws date back to 1912 after a scandal in which a local copper baron paid off state legislators to score a Senate seat.