This is not good for Kentucky. It messes with KY's Constitution... We may just have to fight this here in KY. We'll see how it goes...
I agree with Bear......
Corporations are not people with rights like me. They do not breathe and have no brain.... If they are people, some companies deserve the death sentence for some of the things they have done, are doing and will do in the future because we didn't kill them now. http://www.courier-journal.com/article/2....
Ruling will affect Kentucky contribution law
By Joseph Gerth firstname.lastname@example.org January 21, 2010
The U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing corporations and unions to spend money to support or oppose political candidates will invalidate state law in Kentucky, but not in Indiana.
Craig Dilger, chairman of the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance, said the ruling conflicts with Kentucky's Constitution, which prohibits corporations from giving anything of value to a candidate for office. The registry may have to change its rules or seek legislation to comply with the ruling.
Dilger said the state needs to consider requiring corporations that engage in political activity to disclose their activity and determine if it can limit the amount of money that could be spent on behalf of a candidate.
Emily Dennis, general counsel for the registry, said the decision won't affect the state's prohibition on corporate contributions directly to campaigns.
Indiana imposes limits on corporate and labor contributions to campaigns and campaign committees, which are not affected by the court's decision. However, it does not restrict independent corporate expenditures on advertising during campaigns, though such commercials are rare.
Traditionally, corporations and labor groups have used affiliated organizations, including political action committees, to get their message out to voters.
But in many cases they have been required to advocate issues, rather than urging voters to support or oppose a particular candidate.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., a longtime critic of federal restrictions on campaign spending who argues that money is speech, praised the court's decision.
For too long, some in this country have been deprived of full participation in the political process, McConnell said in a statement. With today's monumental decision, the Supreme Court took an important step in the direction of restoring the First Amendment rights of these groups by ruling that the Constitution protects their right to express themselves about political candidates and issues up until Election Day.
McConnell previously challenged campaign-finance restrictions in the McCain-Feingold law, but he was rebuffed by the Supreme Court in 2003. On Thursday the high court overturned part of its ruling in the McConnell case that upheld restrictions on independent corporate campaign expenditures.
U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth, D-3rd District, said he is concerned that the decision will be disastrous for our democracy. With so much special-interest money already flowing through our system, Americans rightly wonder whether Congress works for them or Wall Street banks, drug companies and deep-pocketed special interests.
Now, the Supreme Court has opened up the floodgates to even more corrupting money.
Bill Londrigan, president of the Kentucky AFL-CIO, said it's too early to tell if the ruling will be good or bad for Kentuckians. But he said it will do away with many of the issue ads and allow groups to simply tell a voter to back a candidate.
It may be beneficial to organizations like ours to advertise clearly and effectively our position, he said. But it also could potentially open the floodgates of corporate political money.
However, two large corporations with Kentucky ties said the ruling will not change how they operate.
We do not use corporate money for political purposes, and I don't know of any plans to do so, said Malcolm Berkley of Atlanta-based UPS, whose main air hub is in Louisville.
We do not see this ruling impacting Ashland's policies or practices, said Jim Vitak, spokesman for Covington-based Ashland Inc.
Kentucky Senate President David Williams, R-Burkesville, said he doesn't believe the court ruling will make much difference, since corporations and labor unions have in the past been ignoring the law by using PACs and 527 groups, so named because they are organized under Section 527 of the federal tax code.
In Indiana, some expect the court's decision to open the door to major spending on Indiana's federal races, especially in Democrat Baron Hill's 9th Congressional district which has been hotly contested over the last decade. This year at least three Republicans, Including New Albany businessman Mike Sodrel, plan to seek the party's nomination to try to unseat Hill.
This absolutely changes the game, said former state Democratic Party Chairman Kip Tew, who was a co-chairman of Barack Obama's presidential campaign in Indiana. This would mean that Mike Sodrel's (trucking) company could now do whatever it wanted to help Sodrel get elected.
Former state Republican Chairman Mike McDaniel said the decision could change the congressional election because it allows companies and unions to get involved.
This is a positive step for freedom of expression, McDaniel said.
But Ed Feigenbaum, a campaign-finance expert who also publishes several Indiana policy and political newsletters, said that many corporations might take a pass on political advocacy.
Nobody's real sure what it means, Feigenbaum said.
Reporter Joseph Gerth can be reached at (502) 582-4702. Reporters James R. Carroll, Lesley Stedman Weidenbener and Patrick Howington contributed to this story.