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The Democratic ConstitutionExperimentalism and Interpretation$
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Brian E. Butler

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780226474502

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226474649.001.0001

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Citizens United

Citizens United

(p.128) Chapter Six Citizens United
The Democratic Constitution

Brian E. Butler

University of Chicago Press

Citizens United is an example of a case where the Supreme Court overruled a law created by democratically elected representatives in the name of democratic process. In this chapter the important First Amendment election finance case, Citizens United, is analyzed and critiqued through a survey of recent legal literature on the decision. In particular, the evaluations of Epstein, Dworkin and Robert C. Post are highlighted. Once a set of critiques are outlined, the issues of Citizens United are then analyzed under a democratic experimentalism framework. What is concluded is that the fact-based and experimental outlook of democratic experimentalism would help the Court avoid the dogmatic and authoritarian stance that the Citizens United opinion unfortunately exemplifies.

Keywords:   First Amendment, Citizens United, Post, Epstein, Dworkin, democratic experimentalism, campaign finance

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