Now that the dust has settled following the Citizens United v. FEC re-argument, the second round of reaction stories, editorials and analyses are flowing in (CCP recapped the first round here).
L. Gordon Crovitz of the Wall Street Journal, George Will of The Washington Post, and the editorial boards of The Denver Post and the Des Moines Register weigh in on the side of Citizens United and free speech. The Wall Street Journal‘s “Journal Editorial Report” television program on FOX News also featured discussion of the case — James Taranto, OpinionJournal.com editor, comments: “If Citizens United had made a porno movie, it would’ve been protected by the First Amendment…”
A Los Angeles Times‘ editorial seems to agree with the free speech crowd that “[u]nions and corporations, profit and nonprofit, should be allowed to engage in political communications without micromanagement by federal regulators,” but there seems to be some confusion on whether or not direct contributions could be at play here as they argue for a middle ground between overruling Austin and allowing the government to continue regulating independent political speech. Their only concern, though, seems to be preventing direct contributions from corporations, which overruling Austin would not allow (which they specifically mention). The Times also notes, much to CCP’s amusement, that the case “pits campaign reformers against free-speech advocates, two groups not accustomed to disagreeing.” Riiight.