The Edmond Sun

State News

April 8, 2014

Guild: Ruling skews political process toward rich

OKLA. CITY — EDITOR’S NOTE: This is one in a series of stories about candidates seeking the 5th District Congressional seat. Other candidates who have announced plans to file for the office April 9-11 are Corporation Commissioner Patrice Douglas, Sen. Clark Jolley, Rep. Mike Turner, Rep. Shane Jett and Harvey Sparks on the GOP side. Other Democrats who announced for the seat are state Sen. Al McAffrey, Keith Davenport and Marilyn Rainwater.

Congressional 5th District candidate Tom Guild said last week’s Supreme Court ruling on campaign finance will skew politics in support of the super-wealthy and weaken the voices of millions of Americans. The ruling poses a danger to American democracy, he said.

Last week’s 5-4 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court removed a restriction that excluded individuals from contributing to more than one federal candidate during a two-year election cycle. This ruling did not change any individual’s base contribution limit of giving no more than $2,600 per individual candidate during a primary or general election.

Chief Justice John Roberts stated for the majority that, overall caps were a burden to “an individual’s right to participate in the public debate through political expression and political association.”

Following the corruption of the Watergate scandal of the Nixon administration, Congress passed a campaign reform finance law in 1974. Statutory limits were placed on political contributions. This resulted in the creation of the Federal Election Commission.

“So it’s going to affect very few people, but those very few people theoretically could give the maximum donation to a congressional candidate, including House and Senate, multiple presidential candidates and really the sky is the limit,” said Guild, D-Edmond.

The ruling says the $48,600 cap every two years by individuals giving to all federal candidates violated the First Amendment. Separate aggregate limits of $74,000 on contributions to political party committees is also unconstitutional, the court stated.

The Supreme Court is enabling wealthy individuals to contribute freely to their favorite candidates in each of the 435 House of Representative races in the U.S., said Guild, a retired University of Central Oklahoma professor of legal studies.

Guild said the 2010 Citizens United ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court, that corporations are people for purposes of speech, led the way for last week’s court decision.

“In our campaign, our average contribution is $46,” Guild said. “For our biggest contribution, I believe we have four or five people that have given us $500.”

Former state Sen. Steve Russell, R-Oklahoma City, said the Citizens United ruling reinforced the Constitution of the United States of America. An association of individuals are still individuals that have the right of freedom of expression, Russell said.

“I believe the Supreme Court got it right,” Russell said. “Associations of individuals had just as much right to freedom of speech as a single individual, whether they were many or they were one.”

Last week’s campaign finance decision has determined that an individual cannot be limited in their expression, Russell said.

“Why should we express limitations on you on how much you want to express your views in the support of political issues or political candidates that are running for office?” Russell said. “I think they got it right.”

Text Only
State News
  • Johnson wants path to citizenship for illegals

    EDITOR’S NOTE: This is part of a series of stories on candidates facing a runoff primary election Aug. 26. Tuesday, Johnson will provide her thoughts on jobs, health care, and the $17.5 trillion national debt.

    August 1, 2014

  • Time to vote: State Sen. Connie Johnson Q&A

    • What needs to be done to create job growth in the United States?
    Job creation, strong public education and protecting our civil liberties are three of the main issues of my campaign for the U.S. Senate.
    In the U.S. Senate, I will do what we know works: invest in education and infrastructure in ways that stimulate innovation and create jobs.

    August 1, 2014

  • MS_Keifer.jpg Police seek help in finding Edmond youth

    Edmond Police Department Spokeswoman Jenny Monroe said the agency needs the public’s help finding 16-year-old Keifer McMullin.
    Monroe said he ran away from home July 17.
    “This is not the first time, but the longest he’s been gone,” Monroe said.
    Monroe said Keifer was last seen wearing white-colored Nike tennis shoes, blue jeans, a red shirt and had a black, heavy coat. If you know where he is located call 911 or text a tip at 625-TEXT.

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • Election board absentee voting deadline nears

    Voters who want to have absentee ballots mailed to them for the runoff primary election Aug. 26 should apply now. Although the County Election Board can accept applications for absentee ballots until 5 p.m. Aug. 20, voters who want to vote by absentee ballot are urged to apply early.
    Absentee ballot application forms are available at the County Election Board office, located at 4201 N. Lincoln Blvd. in Oklahoma City.

    August 1, 2014

  • State Education Department looking to develop new academic standards

    The Oklahoma State Department of Education is encouraging Oklahoma educators, parents and others interested in public education to consider taking part in the development of new academic standards for English language arts (ELA) and mathematics. Coordinated by OSDE, the standards-creation process is designed to be as inclusive and comprehensive as possible.

    August 1, 2014

  • FAITH Jewels of India Russ Sharrock with Lepers Children.jpg Jewels of India aids mission for kids of lepers

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • CUELLARJD_5 copy.jpg $1 million bond set in abuse case

    Jose D. Jesus Cuellar Becerra was arraigned Wednesday afternoon on nine felony counts of assault, abuse, arson and kidnapping and three misdemeanor counts of domestic abuse.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Integris Bass Baptist Health Center adds robotic surgery system

    The da Vinci Si has several features designed to provide clinical benefits and efficiency in the operating room.

    July 31, 2014

  • 3.2 quake shakes area near Enid

    July 31, 2014

  • okco fair 100.jpg Oklahoma County Free Fair offers competition, free fun

    Oklahoma County residents are invited to compete in the 100th annual Oklahoma County Free Fair as they take part in many activities scheduled just for them.
    The county fair will get underway Aug. 21-23 at the Oklahoma State Fair Park and will be highlighted by its open adult and youth along with 4-H and Oklahoma Home and Community Education categories, as well as its special contest and activities.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo