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Am J Public Health. 2011 Jul;101(7):1172-9. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2010.300043. Epub 2011 Mar 18.

Citizens United, public health, and democracy: the Supreme Court ruling, its implications, and proposed action.

Author information

1
Department of Health Sciences, Northern Arizona University, AZ 86011, USA. bill.wiist@nau.edu

Abstract

The 2010 US Supreme Court Citizens United v Federal Election Commission 130 US 876 (2010) case concerned the plans of a nonprofit organization to distribute a film about presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. The Court ruled that prohibiting corporate independent expenditures for advocacy advertising during election campaigns unconstitutionally inhibits free speech. Corporations can now make unlimited contributions to election advocacy advertising directly from the corporate treasury. Candidates who favor public health positions may be subjected to corporate opposition advertising. Citizen groups and legislators have proposed remedies to ameliorate the effects of the Court's ruling. The public health field needs to apply its expertise, in collaboration with others, to work to reduce the disproportionate influence of corporate political speech on health policy and democracy.

PMID:
21421946
PMCID:
PMC3110222
DOI:
10.2105/AJPH.2010.300043
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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