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The Boston Globe

Opinion

JEFF JACOBY

Why are Democrats still obsessed with Citizens United?

IN A RATIONAL world, November’s election would have finally ended the left’s hysteria over the Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. From the howls of liberal outrage that greeted that 2010 ruling, anyone would have thought the court had condemned Democrats to electoral defeat as far as the eye could see.

Time magazine grimly predicted that American democracy would never be the same: “Now ExxonMobil or Walmart can simply go into the district of a member of Congress who is giving them a hard time and spend as much money as it wants to defeat him.” President Obama pronounced Citizens United “more devastating to the public interest” than anything he could think of. If Democrats in Congress failed to overturn the ruling, Senator Charles Schumer warned, “we will have let the Supreme Court predetermine the outcome of next November’s elections.” Liberals compared the case to one ugly archetype after another: “Watergate.” “Plessy v. Ferguson.” “Dred Scott.”

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