Speak Outs
Speak Out
Do corporations have First Amendment rights?

Jan. 19, 2012

By Jeremy Quattlebaum, Student Voices staff writer

With the Republican primaries under way, and national elections about to start heating up across the country, a new player is getting actively involved in elections: corporations.

In 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that a federal ban on spending by corporations and unions in federal elections was unconstitutional. It said corporations have the same free speech rights as individuals. The ruling overturned a provision of the McCain-Feingold Act of 2002 that targeted campaign finance reform.

In the 5-4 decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Justice Anthony Kennedy argued in the majority opinion that “we have long since held that corporations are covered by the First Amendment.”

“If the First Amendment has any force,” Kennedy wrote, “it prohibits Congress from fining or jailing citizens, or associations of citizens, for simply engaging in political speech.”

The ruling does not allow corporations to donate money directly to individual candidates but it does allow them to run their own ads advocating for or against candidates or ballot initiatives. This has been seen in the early Republican primaries and caucuses where independent political action committees (PACs), flush with corporate donations, ran attack ads on candidates vying for the Republican presidential nomination.

The largest of the PACs, called Restore Our Future, supports former Gov. Mitt Romney, and it spent the most of all the PACs. Restore Our Future is run by Carl Forti, Romney’s political director during his 2008 presidential nomination bid. It is a so-called super PAC, which means it is allowed to raise and spend unlimited amounts provided all donations and expenditures are reported publicly. These independent organizations are a direct result of the Citizens United ruling.

Romney is not alone. All the major candidates have a super PAC working on their behalf, spending sometimes millions to advocate for them or attack a rival.

Supporters of the Supreme Court ruling argue that the decision allows for more competition. CNN senior political contributor Ed Rollins wrote in a 2010 editorial, “The floodgates for money will obviously be opened by the court’s decision and that may give good candidates the opportunity to compete against incumbents who have tremendous government resources that help them run year-round campaigns on taxpayer dollars.”

But not everyone was happy with the ruling. President Barack Obama said the ruling is “a major victory for big oil, Wall Street banks, health insurance companies and the other powerful interests that marshal their power every day in Washington to drown out the voices of everyday Americans.”

Recently in Montana, the state’s Supreme Court issued a ruling that went against the Citizens United decision. The Montana Supreme Court upheld a 1912 state law that forbid corporations from directly contributing to political campaigns in state elections. Justice James Nelson, who reluctantly dissented, wrote: “Corporations are not persons. Human beings are persons, and it is an affront to the inviolable dignity of our species that courts have created a legal fiction which forces people — human beings — to share fundamental, natural rights with soulless creatures of government.”

What do you think?

Should corporations and unions be allowed to contribute unlimited amounts of money to influence elections? Does this help the electoral process or hinder it? Do corporations have free speech rights, too? Do you think corporate spending in campaigns will help an individual’s voice or hurt? Join the discussion and let us know what you think!

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Comments
4/9/2014
Sidney/MT
Megan
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
The issue of this article is whether or not corporations have first amendment rights, which includes donating money directly to individual political candidates. I think that because corporations are made up of groups of people that they do have a first amendment right to free speech. Although like many other rights it can be limited. I agree with what Reanna had to say about the government should be more concerned with putting a cap on the amount they can contribute, than limiting their rights. In the article President Barack Obama said he felt with this power, large corporations would cover the voice of the people. I both agree and disagree with the president. I don't think it would cover the peoples voice because money can't buy votes, but money can buy access. The big corporations would have more money and more access to the politicians, which means their favorites might get more advertisement. The corporations contribution to politicians should be monitored.

4/8/2014
Sidney/Montana
Cash
Faulhaber/Sidney High School
The issue of this blog is whether or not corporations have a right to donate their money to what ever candidates the choose, which the courts consider money as "speech". I personally believe that the corporations have every right to do so, the government has no business telling an individual or a group of individual's how much money the can contribute. I do agree with the article in it's framing of justice Kennedy's opinion, in that corporations do have first amendment rights. I also agree with some bloggers saying that elections should reflect with what people want. And donations are the easiest indicator of that.

4/8/2014
Sidney/MT
Lexie B
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
The issue being discussed in this article is whether or not corporations have a right, under the First Amendment, to give an unlimited amount of money to campaigns. I agree with Aubrey G. in this case, as she said "elections are about what the people want." Money does speak louder than words in many cases, including this one. Corporations of course have a right to free speech, but the amount of money should be limited. As Obama said "a major victory for big oil, Wall Street banks, health insurance companies and the other powerful interests that marshal their power every day in Washington to drown out the voices of everyday Americans.” The influence of money will over weigh what the Americans want. This is exactly how Montana felt when they upheld a 1912 state law forbidding corporations from directly contributing to political campaigns in state elections. I believe that allowing corporations to give an unlimited amount of money will also hurt the election process. Allowing corporations to give an unlimited amount will flip scales upside down and will drown out the voice of the American people.

4/8/2014
Sidney/MT
Nicole Moore
Faulhaber/Sidney High School
This issue at hand is whether or not first amendment rights are being blocked by not allowing corporations to donate freely to campaigns. Many corporations feel that their voice "freedom of speech" is being heard by supporting candidates with similar viewpoints as them. People say that money doesn't buy votes or freedom of speech, but I don't agree with that because money buys advertisements which is basically speech. Yes corporations have the freedom of speech, and I don't agree with Obama that "a major victory for big oil...other powerful interests...drown out the voices of everyday Americans". People will still be heard. I feel this is a tough one because it could go both ways. Corporations could want to support a candidate who will help with regulations in the business industry or it could be only a select few people in the company working based on self-interest.I believe corporations have the right to spend as much money as they want but I do not believe corporations should distribute unlimited amounts of money, especially if they are a public corporation. Public corporations are invested in by stockholders, so unlimited spending should not be placed on political candidates when money is reinvested. While this is more of an opinion reflected at business practices. On that note however, if the people in charge of the business want to throw vast amounts of money at the candidate they can take drawings and pay it themselves. I agree with John that corporations have the same first amendment rights. Constitutionally corporations can but business ethics wise they should not.

4/8/2014
Sidney
Michael
Mr. Faulhaber SHS
The issue of whether or not corporations have first amendment rights could be open and closed if it were that easy. My personal opinion is that money is speech. You work hard for it, and therefore it's only common sense to use that money in any way that one wishes, whether to buy the latest gaming console or to spend it on a political figure you wish to succeed in winning office. With that logic, one would then have to determine if a business or corporation is a "person," in that aspect. Tresha from Sidney High School had said, " In my opinion, 'businesses' is not synonymous with 'people.' I think corporations have rights under the first amendment but with limits. No business's rights should be put over any person's." And that happens to be where I am pushing. A corporation is a collection of individuals who represent a product that they wish to sell, or that is how I will choose to define "corporation." A person, on the other hand, is an individual that requires basic needs in order to survive. With that being said, we need to look at the differences between corporations and people. Individuals, if not the 1% "evil rich," do not make as much as what a corporation, a collection of individuals, make. Basically, corporations can produce way more funds for political candidates that the individual. But that doesn't mean that these corporations can simply "buy votes," as some may speculate. Indirectly it could be seen as that, but the money that corporations produce and that individual persons produce have almost the same result. But in this instance, I feel that corporations are not similar to people, and therefore should not be given the ability to contribute an unlimited amount of money to potentially influence elections. As we all know, power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely, and money is the root of evil. Therefore, the possibility of unlimited donations could result in a great evil power in this land that would not reflect the will of the people.

4/7/2014
Sidney/MT
Rietta
Mr. Faulhaber/SHS
The issue of this article is whether or not corporations have First Amendment rights. According to the article, in the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling, they ruled in a 5-4 decision that corporations have the same free speech rights as individuals so they are therefore covered by the First Amendment. I think that if we allowed corporations and unions unlimited power to contribute as much money as they wanted to influence elections and get their candidate elected it would greatly hinder the election process. A candidate should base their platform off of their own views and what they want to do to make the county better not what they think big corporations and unions want. They should do it to better all of the people, not just the elite group of people. As stated in the article by President Obama, it is "a major victory for big oil, Wall Street banks, health insurance companies and the other powerful interests that marshal their power every day in Washington to drown out the voices of everyday Americans." This would definitely hinder the election process because it would turn into a county run by corporation and unions rather than the people, since the corporations and unions would be selecting the President instead of the people. I also think that corporate spending in campaigns would hurt an individuals voice because most people don't have as much money as the corporations and unions so they wouldn't be able to compete with them in getting the candidate to hear what they have to say about certain issues. I agree with Aubrey, that it is unfortunate but most of the time money speaks louder the words do. Therefore, I believe that corporations and unions do have First Amendment rights but they should be limited in how much money they are allowed to spend in elections.

4/7/2014
Sidney Montana
Erin
Mr. Faulhaber - SHS
The issue of this article is whether or not corporations being able to give unlimited amounts of money to people campaigning is a figure of First Amendment speech. As Kennedy wrote, "If the First Amendment has any force, it prohibits Congress from fining or jailing citizens, or associations of citizens, for simply engaging in political speech." By putting there money into a candidate, a corporation is voicing their advocacy for him or her. I agree with what Donovan from Rudyard MT who said, "Corporations should have the rights that people have."

4/7/2014
Sidney/MT
Tori
Faulhaber/Sidney High School
The issue here is whether or not corporations have First Amendment rights. In the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling, as stated in the article, the majority opinion held that corporations are covered by the First Amendment. I do not believe corporations and unions should be allowed to contribute unlimited amounts of money to influence elections. As quoted in the article, Obama said, it is "a major victory for big oil, Wall Street banks, health insurance companies and the other powerful interests that marshal their power every day in Washington to drown out the voices of everyday Americans." This is hurting the electoral process by contributing to one huge bureaucracy where corporations, not the people, are selecting the next President of the United States! Go Montana! While I do believe that corporations should have freedom of speech rights, I believe those rights must be limited, just as humans are, in order to keep individuals' voices from being heard. I agree with Parker, that "candidates should succeed based on their own advantages and strengths."

4/7/2014
Sidney/MT
Lexi
Faulhaber/SHS
The issue of this case is whether the First Amendment allows corporations to spend unlimited amounts of money of campaigning. I believe that corporations should have a limit. The elections and primaries would be changed dramatically. The first amendment allows free speech and corporations are given this free speech. Giving corporations unlimited spending on candidates would hinder the election process. However in Montana, their state Supreme Court has decided that the state forbids corporations to directly contribute in state elections. I would agree with Montana's law. Corporations have first amendment rights and should be allowed to give money, but not an unlimited amount. I disagree with Parker from Harmin MS. COMPETETION is what makes the election process. One will always be at an advantage, but it should not be an extreme advantage. Limiting the corporation spending will keep the competition of the election process strong.

4/6/2014
Sidney/Montana
Reanna Peterson
Mr. Fauhlaber/Sidney High School
The issue of this article is whether or not corporations have first amendment rights and if they do, whether or not it is unconstitutional to ban them from contributing unlimited amounts of money to influence elections. People who argue that corporations should not be allowed to contribute unlimited amounts, like President Barrack Obama as stated in the article, think the corporations will cause the voice of everyday Americans to be quieted. Others like Donovan from Rudyard believe that corporations should have these rights and that it would allow for more competition in elections. I agree with John from Porterville. I believe that corporations are not some creature; they are in a sense, a group of people. For that reason, they should have first amendment rights. However, the government interest of putting a cap on the amount they can contribute is more important than these rights. If they had unlimited rights, our election campaigns would become even more corrupt and dissimulate our democratic system.

4/6/2014
Sidney, Montana
Taylor
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
I think that whether or not corporations have a First Amendment right is very difficult. I think that corporations should have the right to have and voice their own opinion. I do not however think that corporations should be allowed to spend unlimited amounts of money on political campaigns. As Allison had said previously their money would influence and hinder the election process. If corporations are allowed to spend unlimited amount of money it is only expressing the views of a few people with a lot of money. I disagree with what Ed Rollins has said in the article that it gives good candidates the opportunity to compete against incumbents. I think that this will end up hurting good candidates and help incumbents because corporations can give money to persuade. Even though I do not think that corporations should be allowed to spend unlimited money I still think that they should be allowed to have other rights.

4/6/2014
Sidney, MT
Tresha
Sidney High School
The issue in this article is on corporations being allowed to participate in campaigns just as people do. In my opinion, 'businesses' is not synonymous with 'people.' I think corporations have rights under the first amendment but with limits. No business's rights should be put over any person's. This article addresses the issue with campaigns and I believe this philosophy still applies. The views of the people are more important than a business's which doesn't have views in the first place. I don't think corporations should be able to take any part in campaigning because like the article said, "it is an affront to the inviolable dignity of our species that courts have created a legal fiction which forces people — human beings — to share fundamental, natural rights with soulless creatures of government.” We can't let corporations steal the mic while we sit and shush American citizens. I understand everyone's comments saying corporations have the first amendment right to say whatever they want and contribute however much they want, but I don't think they're thinking of the imminent consequences. Allowing corporations to contribute indefinite amounts of money would mean letting them control the campaign race, allowing them to choose the president and members of congress. This would turn into an oligarchy where giant corporations run the country. Corporation's first amendment rights should be limited in order to protect the citizens rights.

4/6/2014
Sidney/MT
Colin
Faulhaber/Sidney High School
The issue of the article is whether the First Amendment applies to corporations or not. Personally I believe that corporations should be able to contribute to campaigns. I agree with John that there should be a cap but they should be able to contribute. If a candidate can get PACs to donate them money, they deserve it. I agree with Ed Collins' statement that, “The floodgates for money will obviously be opened by the court’s decision and that may give good candidates the opportunity to compete against incumbents who have tremendous government resources that help them run year-round campaigns on taxpayer dollars.” The way to beat incumbents is to raise more money. I disagree with Samantha because the way to win elections is to get money and get the candidates name out. I believe that the First Amendment should apply to corporations so that they are able to directly support a candidate.

4/6/2014
Sidney, MT
Colton
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
What is being discussed here is whether or not corporations have the freedom of speech right to contribute money on behalf of a political candidate. I believe that corporations do have a freedom of speech and thus can donate money to a political group or party. However I do believe there should be some restraints on their donating, so we don't have a few wealthy companies deciding who is in office. In the article it talked about how my state made a ruling that went against the Citizens United Case, I do not agree with the ruling and i think they shouldn't have ruled that way, but they do have the power to do it. Furthermore as said by Lily of Texas, freedom of speech also protects unions which can voice their opinions so why cant corporations. If corporations are not allowed to voice their beliefs how is it any different than a person not being able to voice there beliefs. Just like government policy affects individuals it also affects corporations so they should be able to have some say in what happens in Washington.

4/6/2014
Sidney, MT
Dominique
Faulhaber/SHS
I firmly believe everyone including corporations have First Ammendment rights. It does not exclusively mention in the Constitution that corporations do not have these listed rights. I believe everyone does, that is why the Founding Fathers created this Amendment. In the article Justice Anthony Kennedy stated, "We have long since held that corporations are covered by the First Amendment." I agree with Justice Kennedy on this issue. Also in the article President Obama said the ruling in Citizens United v Federal Election Commission, that the case was a major victory for big oil. But with the ruling the corporations can not donate money directly to the candidate, only run their own ads for them. I do not see a problem with this. I agree with Jocelyn E. of Irving, TX. She stated people run the corporations and they have their First Amendment right. I strongly believe corporations have a First Amendment right.

4/6/2014
Sidney/MT
Ariana
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
The Supreme Court ruled that a federal ban on spending by corporations and unions in federal elections was unconstitutional. This meant that corporations have the same free speech rights as individuals, and can pay for their own ads supporting candidates, and spend as much money as they want doing so. Obama warns that this will drown out the voices of everyday Americans. Justice James Nelson agreed saying that corporations are not persons, and do not share the rights of people. I do not think corporations and unions should be allowed to contribute unlimited amounts of money to influence elections. Aubrey said, "The elections are about what the people want." And if corporations do have freedom of speech rights, they should act as a representative of the people who work for them, if anything. It is more important for American citizen's voices to be heard than a money making corporation's. American elections should be an opportunity for anyone, from any financial background, to have a chance to participate. The rights of corporations should be more narrow than that of actual people, allowing for them to use their own money to say what they like, but in a limited way.

4/4/2014
Sidney,MT
Juan Aguilar
Mr.Faulhaber
The issue presented in this article is whether or not corporations should have the free speech rights just like citizens. I believe corporations should have free speech rights. I agree with Lilly that corporations are protected in the first amendment and they should not only be able to voice what they believe in bu also be able to use their money however they please. I believe this is true because it is the corporations money and if they want it to voice their opinion on an issue that is their choice and the government shouldn't be able to stop them. The article says that Justice Nelson says the courts have created a legal fiction which forces people to share fundamental, natural rights with soulless creatures of government. I believe he is wrong though because corporations are run by people so they corporation can voice an opinion off of what the people of the company believe. This is why i believe corporations should have first amendment rights because it is their money and their choice.

2/12/2013
Rudyard MT
Donovan
Ms.Campbell Northstar
Corporations should have rights that people should have. The First Amendment says freedom of speech, so the corporations can say anything they want and contribute anything they want. So yea the corporations do have rights.

5/11/2012
Porterville, CA
John
Smith/Monache
Corporations have the same first amendments rights that any individual has. They should be able to contribute money to campaigns, though there should be a money cap on campaigns in our election system. This would ensure the most fairness and equality for all: citizen, union, and corporation alike.

1/31/2012
Warrenton,VA
Samantha
Auburn middle mrs.yergin
No nobody should contribute unlimited amounts of money to influence the elections. The elections are what they are and they will always be the same whether we like it or not so to contribute unlimited amounts of money to influence them is just flat wrong.

1/28/2012
Irving, TX
Lilly H
Bradley/Nimitz
Because the rights of corporations and unions are protected in the first amendment, they should not only be able to voice what they believe in but also be able to use their money however they please. That includes using the money to influence elections; however, we must be wary- the interests of the profit oriented corporations won't always reflect the interests of the hardworking people. Unions, too, won't always mirror the interests of the people as a whole either because unions generally rally for the causes of only a distinct group. Because of these reasons, it's obvious that money contributions will only interfere with the electoral process, and in the process, snub many individual voices with their influence.

1/26/2012
Aurora/OH
Parker
Mr. Frankmann/Harmin Middle School
I don't thinkn that corporations should be able to give money to campaigns because that makes them completely uneven. If Google funded Gingrich, and some smaller website funded Romney, gingrich would have an advantage. The candidates should succeed based on their own advantages and strengths. It definitely hinders the electorial process.

1/25/2012
Irving/Texas
Aubrey G.
Bradley/Nimitz High School
Corporations and unions should not be allowed to contribute unlimited amounts of money to influence elections because the elections are about what the people want. Corporate spending will hurt an individual’s voice because, unfortunately, money speaks louder than words. The probable candidates corporation will invest it's money in will benefit them, the big business, somehow, without people in mind. Corporations have rights of free speech, but I think it should be kept to a minimal in order to keep things fair. The corporation should be allowed to support a candidate on any products they already produce or in any business offices, or in local places such as that. As for donating millions of dollars to one candidate or spending tons of money on commercials bashing the rivals, the ones who hold the money, a.k.a., the power, need to stay quiet. It was said in the article that the big businesses will give good people a fair chance, but it's the exact opposite! Most large businesses will look out for themselves. I have to agree with the good ol' president on this one- the organized, well put together ads we see on T.V. Can smear and twist campaign slogans in order to mislead voters. The voters should be inspired by the words of the candidates, not the words of the corporations and unions that are in favor of them.

1/25/2012
Aurora/OH
Trevor
Mr. Frankmann/Harmon Middle School
Corporations and unions should not be allowed to contribute to a politican campaign. Our government is a mess already with dirty politicians. Everyday we see the Jimmy Diomra case on the news about corporations getting jobs because of their contributions. Corporations should focus on building more jobs and use the campign contributions on creating these jobs instead.

1/23/2012
Irving, TX
Allison
Bradley/Nimitz
Our Constitution and the Amendments attributed to it serve to protect the rights of men and women from, among other things, powerful corporate interests. I agree with Justice James Nelson who said, “Corporations are not persons. Human beings are persons, and it is an affront to the inviolable dignity of our species that courts have created a legal fiction which forces people — human beings — to share fundamental, natural rights with soulless creatures of government.” Individuals who happen to head large corporations are people and can therefore donate money to whichever political group they choose. However, a corporation is not a political action committee; they may not represent the unified beliefs of groups of people; their roles in society are not related to politics; they should not be given the same rights as people are given. Therefore, a corporation should neither contribute money to campaigns nor support a single political party, candidate, or opinion. The money and influence that would arise from these unconstitutional actions hinders the election process because the opinions of corporations are not opinions of the public.

1/23/2012
Irving, Tx
Jocelyn E.
Bradley/ Nimitz
I do believe that corporations have the right to the first amendment, because they is people that run the corporation and they have a right to say what they want for their company. But they shouldn't use that right by bribing candidates with unlimited amounts of money for their campaign. If they donate the money, then that's fine, but accepting it as a bribe is not. By the big corporations basically buying the candidate, that leaves no voice for the fellow Americans who are in need and want their voices heard. I think the corporations should be limited to what they can provide in the election process because it isn't fair to the millions of people in need.

1/20/2012
Norfolk, NE
Shelby
Mrs. Gentile
I believe that corporations have the right to spend their money as they wish. In the end it will come down to the voters making the decision and not the corporations.

1/20/2012
benson/arizona
Matthew
mr. sorenson
no one should be be fined or jailed by congress for engaging in a political speech everyone has the right to say what they want. that is what the first amendment is for.

1/20/2012
Benson, AZ
Alexandria
Mr. Sorenson/ Benson HighSchool
I don't think they should be allowed to contribute unlimited amounts of money to influence elctions. It hinders the outcome of the electoral process. I think it will hurt an individuals voice because I wouldn't want to vote for someone who thinks spending that much money on campaigns is worth it.

1/20/2012
Norfolk/NE
Liz
Mrs. Gentile
I believe that companies will always try to get there name out and by supporting candidates it helps there business. They have the right to display themselves in any way they choose as long as it is not unconstitutional. People make the choices not the big name companies.

1/20/2012
Norfolk NE
Rosco
Mrs.GentilE
No because they can have a big change in how things turn out and in the constitution the people are to have the final say in things

1/20/2012
Norfolk, NE
Beth
Mrs. Gentile/Lutheran High Northeast
I think it's only fair that they support who they want, just as the rest of us do. The people vote for who they think is most qualified and will be a good leader, not the one with the most money.

1/20/2012
Norfolk/Nebraska
Daniel
Mrs. Gentle/ Lutheran High Northeast
I think they should have first amendment rights. They are just groups of people who all share the freedom of speech so I don't see why they shouldn't. They should have a voice in what happens in government because they will have to deal with the governments policies very often. I'm not really a fan of all the money that is spent just to get someone elected , but it is their money and they should be allowed to do with it as they please.

1/19/2012
enola
annemarie
lhne
I don't think that corporations should have first amendment rights because they could help or hurt a candidate big time. Also, it seems like, the more freedom of speech corporations use/have, the less peoples' opinions matter because the people those people are trying to sway, are listening more to the big corporations.

1/19/2012
Norfolk
Andrea
Mrs. Gentile
No because the corporations are usually just trying to make themselves look better. Also, they are not "persons" and should not be allowed the same first amendment rights. Sometimes it may help the unknown candidates to have a better campaign, but it may also hinder them.

1/19/2012
Norfolk, NE
Faith
Mrs. Gentile/ Lutheran High Northeast
No, corporations should not be able to use their money in order to influence voters. Voters need to vote for the people who take the same stands as them and have similar views. Corporations should not have the right to influence who is elected.

1/19/2012
Norfolk, NE
Jordan
Mrs. Gentile
I don't think they should give money to influence elections. We should be voting for the candidates based on the things they bring to the table, not how they advertise.

1/19/2012
Norfolk, NE
Nicholas
Gentile LHNE
I think that corporations should be allowed to support whatever candidate they want. It's completely opinionated and usually not fair but I still think that they have that right. In some ways, it helps the electoral process by giving candidates the option to be more noticeable, but it also hinders it because of its unfairness. Corporations are made of people so ya, they have free speech rights. Corporate spending in campaigns can both hurt an individual's voice and hurt it.

1/19/2012
Norfolk/NE
Hayley
Mrs. Gentile/LHNE
Everyone has the right to free speech, including corporations. I think that they shouldn't get unlimited amounts of money though.

1/19/2012
Norfolk, NE
Brent Oswald
Mrs. Gentile
I don't have a problem with corporations having first amendment rights. In my opinion it's not really a big deal that they give money to individual candidates money. They're bigger than other citizens and i think that because of that they should have more power.

1/19/2012
Norfolk/NE
Rachel
Mrs. Gentile
I dont think that corporations should have the right to donate money to candidates to influence voters. Voters should vote on who they think would be the best candidate. Not who has the biggest amount of money.

1/19/2012
Norfolk, NE
Kelsey
Mrs. Gentile
i do not think that corporations should have the first amendment right because they often times give money to a candidate so they can finish a project to help make them look like a better leader for the people that are voting

1/19/2012
Norfolk
Katrina
LHNE/Gentile
No, I don't think that it's right that corporations are giving money to a candidate to help influence people to vote for them. People shouldn't be influenced to vote for a certain candidate based on the fact that they're "supposedly" going to get big projects done with the money the corporations are giving them. Who says that when things come down to it, that the candidate will actually use the money for those certain projects anyways? Then, people are voting solely based on the fact that certain candidates are getting money for projects.

1/19/2012
Nebraska
Whitney
Mrs. Gentile- LHNE
I don't agree with corporations donating money in order to influence the voters. It's the rights of the voters to vote for who they think will be the best president for our country and they shouldn't feel pressured by others to vote for someone else. I think that the corporations should donate the money to the cause directly because that way they can be sure things will get done.

1/19/2012
Norfolk Ne
Kyle
Mrs. Gentile
I believe that in some ways the coorporations have rights. They have some becasue of the people running it and should be responsible for some of the stuff they have. Also if they didn't have the rights you probably wouldn't see so many of the large coorporations the way they are

1/19/2012
Norfolk, Ne
Taylor
Gentile/Lutheran High
I think that corporations are made up of real people and so those people should not have their rights taken away just because they are a part of that corporation.Laws that affect the corporation, affects the people of those corporations, such as the owners, shareholders, workers, and those that do business with that corporations and even the towns they work in, with all their own small businesses.

1/19/2012
Norfolk, NE
Jacob
Gentile/Lutheran High
Yes, i thing they should have a valid opinion on elections, since they are also heavily affected by many government policies. I don't like the amount of crruption they contribute to, however.

1/19/2012
Norfolk Nebraska
Taylor P
LHNE-Gentile
I don't think that they should be allowed to be the deciding factor in elections. It hinders it if is gives all the power to a small group of people. It will hurt the individuals voice.

1/19/2012
NE
Natalie
Gentile/Lutheran High
No, they should not have as much say as they do in elections by donating money. That is one of the problems with our current government corruption.

1/19/2012
Norfolk NE
Shelby Stolze
Gentile/ Lutheran High Northeast
It's too messy to have so much false advertising in the campaigns anymore. Although it is frustrating to sort through all of the info put out in the media with the push from these corporations, I think taking them out would havea deadly affect.

1/19/2012
Husband, Pennsylvania
Mike H.
Dr. Mike Huntswet
I do believe that they have 1st amendment rights because those rights are for everybody and they are a somebody so they get those rights.

1/19/2012
Norfolk/Nebraska
Tyler
Ms Gentile/Lutheran High Northeast
I don't believe they should have First Amendment rights because its a corporation and instead should be regulated by the government on what they do. Its just another way for people of the particular company to support a certain candidate of their liking and push for what they want in the government.

1/19/2012
Norfolk/NE
Catrina
Gentile
I don't think they should be allowed to contribute unlimited amounts of money to influence elctions. It hinders the outcome of the electoral process. I guess they have frees speech rights too, because everyone does. I think it will hurt an individuals voice because I won't want to vote for someone who thinks spending that much money on campaigns is worth it.

1/19/2012
Norfolk/NE
Jordan
Gentile/LHNE
I don't think they should be able to give money to influence elections. That should be the people's choice, it shouldn't be cheated. They do have the free speech rights, though, but they shouldn't be able to influence the election that much.

1/19/2012
norfolk/nebraska
Hannah
Gentile/ LHNE
I think that all people have the right to freedom of speech and that includes corporations.

1/19/2012
Norfolk, NE
Austin H.
Mrs Gentile
Sure i think that they have 1st amendment rights because they belong to everyone.

1/19/2012
NoRfOlK
Zach M.
MrSeS GeNtIlE
Yes I believe that yes corporations do have the First Amendment Rights

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