The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled today in favor of disclosure and against contribution limits for outside groups running advertisements allowed under the Supreme Court's Citizens United ruling.
A federal court has ruled that a conservative group that plans to raise unlimited sums from people to run ads for and against congressional candidates must disclose its donors.The U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington ruled Friday that the group, SpeechNow.org, can collect unlimited donations from individuals for the ads it plans to run independent of candidates. But the court says the group will have to file reports with the Federal Election Commission spelling out its fundraising and spending.SCOTUSblog explains the lifting of the contribution limits:
Although the SpeechNow case involved contributions to advocacy groups, rather than their spending, the Circuit Court found that the Citizens United ruling “resolves this appeal.” In an opinion written by Chief Judge David B. Sentelle, the Circuit Court said that the $5,000 annual limit on donations to groups like SpeechNow is unconstitutional. The Court went on to rule that such organizations will have to obey the federal campaign finance law’s disclosure and reporting requirements. Those restrictions, however, were not strenuously contested in the case, since SpeechNow’s organizers were mainly interested in clearing the way for unlimited donations to their political advocacy campaigns.