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Accounting, Economics and Law

A Convivium

Ed. by Avi-Yonah, Reuven S. / Biondi, Yuri / Sunder, Shyam

3 Issues per year

Free Access

Citizens United and the Corporate Form

Reuven S. Avi-Yonah1

1University of Michigan

Citation Information: Accounting, Economics, and Law. Volume 1, Issue 3, ISSN (Online) 2152-2820, DOI: 10.2202/2152-2820.1048, December 2011

Publication History

Published Online:
2011-12-15

In Citizens United vs. FEC, the Supreme Court struck down a Federal statute banning direct corporate expenditures on political campaigns. The decision has been widely criticized and praised as a matter of First Amendment law. But it is also interesting as another step in the evolution of our legal views of the corporation. This article argues that by viewing Citizens United through the prism of theories about the corporate form, it is possible to see that the majority and the dissent departed from previous Supreme Court jurisprudence on the First Amendment rights of corporations. It is also possible to then predict what arguments can be expected next.

Keywords: corporation; legal fiction; legal person; real entity; constitutional rights; free speech

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