The Deep Patterns of Campaign Finance Law.

ISSN: 00106151
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Why has American campaign finance law long suffered from doctrinal confusion and sparked bitter ideological conflict? This Article demonstrates that these attributes are rooted in a judicial dispute over the cognitive and social characteristics of central actors in elections. The Article unpacks the foundations of campaign finance law through a multi-tiered analysis of case texts. It first explicates the doctrinal deficiencies that riddle the Supreme Court’s campaign finance jurisprudence. These flaws reflect the Court’s clumsy engagement with democratic theory, which has been an unrecognized driver of campaign finance law and the wellspring of the partisan dispute. Conservatives assert that the pillar of democracy is free participation in the marketplace of information, and subsequently reject restriction of campaign financing even when advanced in the name of anticorruption. Conversely, liberals perceive democracy as vulnerable to systemic corruption from plutocratic influences and )




EISLER, J. (2016). The Deep Patterns of Campaign Finance Law. Connecticut Law Review, 49(1), 55–115. Retrieved from

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