By Eric Wang
Why this disparity in the law’s regulation of political speech? The answer lies in the campaign finance laws, which exempt media corporations from most of the rules that apply to everyone else’s political activities. Instead of imposing more restraints on the media, however, or going to the opposite extreme by subsidizing marginalized speakers, what we need is simply to give everyone the same legal rights to unfettered free speech.
The Supreme Court took the first step with its Citizens United decision, for which it was subject to endless derision, demagoguery and distortions. The court said simply that private citizens may organize themselves in whatever form they wish, and need not buy a media outlet in order to enjoy the same rights as “the press.” In fact, Citizens United was a grass-roots nonprofit that simply wanted to make a documentary about Mrs. Clinton.