Citizens United
Historical Background

This section lists articles that give an overview of 2010 Supreme Court decision of Citizens United v Federal Elections Commission (FEC).

Introduction to CU v FEC
​This article discusses the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) decision on the case of Citizens United v The Federal Election Commission (CUvFEC). This landmark case overturned a series of campaign finance laws and Supreme Court decisions made in the 20th Century. It describes the prelude to the Court’s hearing of the case, the issues stated in the decision and the changes to campaign finance law and the privileges of corporations that resulted from that decision.

Powell Memorandum
On August 23, 1971, prior to accepting President Nixon's nomination to the Supreme Court, Lewis F. Powell sent the "Confidential Memorandum" titled "Attack on the American Free Enterprise System" to a friend at the US Chamber of Commerce. The memo called for corporate America to become more aggressive in molding politics and law in the US as well as inspiring the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to become far more politically active.

The Path
This article chronicles the battles of the past that led to the Citizens United v the Federal Election Commission.

The View From 2015
This article discusses decisions since 2010 and the Citizens United case that have applied Citizens United to other circumstances.

Historical Background
​        Introduction to CU V FEC
        Powell Memorandum    
​        The Path
​        The View From 2015                 

Key Aspects of Citizens United
        Wake Up Call
        Citizen Disillusionment
        Protections of the First Amendment Rights

Impact of Money in Politics
        Campaign Spending and Voter Behavior
        Campaign Contributions and Policy Making
        David and Goliath
        Contributions Help Access to Officials

Regulatory Agencies
        Federal Election Commission (FEC)
        Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
        Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
        Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)

National Action and Responses
        American Anti-Corruption Act
        Federal Campaign Finance Legislation Since CU
        Federal Public Campaign Funding Efforts
        LWV Updated Campaign Finance Positions
        LWV Work on Campaign Finance Reform                       

Actions in Washington State
        PDLs at Risk
        Protecting WAs PDLs
        Role of Wealth in WA Politics
        Washington Campaign Finance Legislation Since CU
        WA Constitution Amendment Initiatives   
        WA Public Campaign Financing

Forum Tools
        Guidelines for Forums
        Democracy in the Balance (PowerPoint)
        Money in Politics and the Aftermath of CU (PowerPoint)