Dual US/VA Government
15 December 2008
The Affects of Buckley v. Valeo
The court case Buckley v. Valeo had a huge impact on the presidential race as far as monetary funds are concerned. A background, Buckley v. Valeo occurred in the beginnings of the Watergate Scandal as Congress desired to get rid of campaign corruption by setting monetary limits on contributors. The case attempted to create a system in which contributors could only give so much money to a certain campaign and, if the amount was above a certain amount, the contribution had to be recorded. The question to be answered was “Did the limits placed on electoral expenditures by the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, and related provisions of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954, violate the First Amendment's freedom of speech and association clauses?” In the end, the Court arrived at two conclusions. First that it was constitutional to set restrictions on individual contributions because it added to the integrity of the race and made the elections fairer overall. The second conclusion was that it was unconstitutional to set limits on the amount of their own money that could be used and on the total expenditures of the campaign as a whole. Buckley v. Valeo had an affect on the political campaign process in the areas of contribution and expenditure limitations, the major parties, and the third parties ("The Oyez Project.").
Buckley v. Valeo had a massive affect on contribution and expenditure limitations in the political process. The appellants argued to the court that limitations set on contributions for political purposes were unconstitutional and that they were in violation of the first amendment. The court agreed in part that these limitations set restrictions on the expressions of the contributors in that, in these days, most forms of expression involve monetary value, but decided that these restrictions on political speech could only be justified by a...