93 Notre Dame L. Rev. Online 1 (2017)

handle is hein.journals/ndalro93 and id is 1 raw text is: 












                                   ESSAY





                          DEAD PRECEDENTS


                                Riley T. Svikhart*


                                INTRODUCTION

      Shaun McCutcheon's   was  the next big campaign  finance case to go before
the  Supreme   Court.    When the Alabama GOP         warned   the  conservative
businessman  that his 2010  federal campaign  contributions might soon  exceed  a
congressionally  imposed   limit, he  decided  to  take  a stand.,,2         Together,
McCutcheon   and the Republican  National Committee  (RNC)-which wish[ed] to
receive the contributions that McCutcheon and similarly situated individuals would
like to make in the absence of such aggregate contribution limits3-challenged the
responsible statutory regime  on First Amendment   grounds  and attracted national
attention en route to a victory before the Supreme Court.
     But  while McCutcheon and the RNC prevailed in their case, they failed in
another noteworthy  regard-Chief   Justice Roberts's controlling opinion declined
their request to squarely overrule a relevant portion of the landmark  campaign




   C   2017  Riley T. Svikhart. Individuals and nonprofit institutions may reproduce and
distribute copies of this Essay in any format, at or below cost, for educational purposes, so long as
each copy identifies the author, provides a citation to the Notre Dame Law Review Online, and
includes this provision and copyright notice.
    *   Candidate for Juris Doctor, Notre Dame Law School, 2018; Bachelor of Arts in
Economics & Business, Westmont College, 2015. Thank you to Professor John Nagle for his
help and guidance throughout law school, and for allowing me to prepare this Essay in a directed
reading. Thanks also to Connor Whitting for encouraging my pursuit of this topic.
    1  Paul Blumenthal, Next Citizens United? McCutcheon Supreme Court Case Targets
Campaign     Contribution  Limits,   HUFFINGTON     POST     (July   31,   2013),
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/3 1/mccutcheon-supreme-court_n_3678555.html.
    2  Shaun  McCutcheon, Donation  Caps Hurt Democracy,  POLITICO (Oct. 6, 2013),
http://www.politico.com/story/2013/10/mccutcheon-how-campaign-spending-caps-hurt-
american-democracy-097834.
    3  McCutcheon v. FEC, 134 S. Ct. 1434, 1443 (2014) (plurality opinion).
    4  See Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, Pub. L. No. 92-225, 86 Stat. 3 (1972),
amended by Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002, Pub. L. No. 107-155, 116 Stat. 81.
    5  A plurality of the Supreme Court sided with McCutcheon, holding the aggregate limits
McCutcheon complained of invalid under the First Amendment. AIcCutcheon, 134 S. Ct. at
1442.


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