As the Supreme Court held in the key free-speech case of Roth v. United States, the First Amendment broadly protects political expression in order to “assure unfettered interchange of ideas for the bringing about of political and social changes desired by the people.” Election-campaign contributions and expenditures facilitate such discourse and are thus vital to our democracy. Yet our current laws stifle political speech and inhibit the unfettered exchange of ideas.

More on Elections and Election Law

Commentary

Wisconsin’s Progressive Police State Betrays Campaign Finance Folly

By Ilya Shapiro. Forbes.com. May 28, 2014.

Should It Be against Law to Criticize Harry Reid?

By Trevor Burrus. Boston Herald. May 27, 2014.

Should It Be Legal for Politicians to Lie?

By Ilya Shapiro. CNN.com. April 28, 2014.

Cato Studies

Move to Defend: The Case against the Constitutional Amendments Seeking to Overturn Citizens United

By John Samples. Policy Analysis No. 724. April 23, 2013.

The DISCLOSE Act, Deliberation, and the First Amendment

By John Samples. Policy Analysis No. 664. June 25, 2010.

The Libertarian Vote in the Age of Obama

By David Kirby and David Boaz. Policy Analysis No. 658. January 21, 2010.

Articles

Shelby County and the Vindication of Martin Luther King’s Dream

Ilya Shapiro. New York University Journal of Law & Liberty. Vol. 8. No. 1. Fall 2013.

Stephen Colbert Is Right to Lampoon Our Campaign Finance System (and So Can You!)

Ilya Shapiro. University of St. Thomas (Minn.) Journal of Law & Public Policy. Vol. 4. No. 2. Spring 2013.

Public Filings

Worley v. Florida Secretary of State

By Allen Dickerson, Anna Mackin, Ilya Shapiro, Trevor Burrus & Julio Colomba. Legal Briefs. October 16, 2013.

Minnesota Majority v. Mansky

By John Whitehead, Douglas McCusick, Jesse Baker, Ilya Shapiro & Trevor Burrus. Legal Briefs. September 9, 2013.

Wagner v. FEC

By Ilya Shapiro and Trevor Burrus. Legal Briefs. July 11, 2013.

Cato Reviews & Journals

Shelby County v. Holder: The Restoration of Constitutional Order

William S. Consovoy and Thomas R. McCarthy. Supreme Court Review. 2012-2013.

Combating Regulatory Protectionism

Policy Report. July/August 2013.

Curbing Campaign Cash: Henry Ford, Truman Newberry, and the Politics of Progressive Reform

John Samples. Cato Journal. Spring/Summer 2013.

Events

McCutcheon v. FEC: Two Books on the Supreme Court’s Latest Campaign Finance Case

Featuring Ilya Shapiro. June 18, 2014. Book Forum.

Censorship Through the Tax Code: How the Proposed IRS Rules for Social Welfare Groups Stifle Political Activity

Featuring Trevor Burrus. March 4, 2014. Policy Forum.

Campaign Finance after
Citizens United: What Happened? What Now?

Featuring John Samples and Bradley A. Smith. January 23, 2013. Conference.