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Should We Limit Corporate Political Spending?

BU professors Bob Zelnick and Graham Wilson debate

| From BU Today | By Art Jahnke

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In the clip above, watch part of a discussion between Bob Zelnick and Graham Wilson. To watch the long version, click here. To watch the edited version, click here.

In a decision likely to have profound political consequences, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled last week that the government cannot limit spending by corporations or unions in political elections. The response to the verdict was immediate and noisy. President Obama said it “strikes at our democracy itself.”

“The last thing we need to do,” said the president, “is hand more influence to the lobbyists in Washington or more power to the special interests to tip the outcome of elections.”

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) called the change in policy a “monumental decision” that would “restore the First Amendment rights of [corporations and unions] by ruling that the Constitution protects their right to express themselves about political candidates and issues up until election day.”

Who’s right? Who’s wrong?

Bostonia asked two political experts to share their views on camera. Bob Zelnick, a College of Communication professor of journalism and national security affairs, supports the court’s decision; Graham Wilson, a College of Arts & Sciences professor of political science, isn’t so sure.

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