Supreme Court ruling

January 21, 2010 12:46:32 PM PST
The headlines tonight will be filled with Haiti (there are 1,400 humanitarian aid flights that can't get into the country, and tens of thousands who survived the earthquake, may not survive their injuries for lack of medical attention), and health care reform (House Speaker Nancy Pelosi admitted today she doesn't have the votes to pass the Senate's version of health care reform, and some Democrats today are talking about watering down the already-watered-down bill even more). But the biggest story today is the Supreme Court's divided decision that allows corporations to contribute to certain political campaigns. The court's decision virtually throws out the McCain-Feingold law, and nearly a century of campaign finance crackdowns.

The justices say this is a freedom of speech issue.

The President says it's going to open the door to a "stampede of special interest money in our politics."

There is outrage from opponents, and jubilation from those who brought the lawsuit. Either way, it's going to change politics and there are some who say it paves the way for corporations to contribute directly to candidates. (The decision only applies to campaigns, not individual candidates.)

One other side note: One justice, Clarence Thomas, wanted to make the contributions secret ? and not force public disclosure. He was the only one who expressed that sentiment.

We'll also have any breaking news of the night, plus Lee Goldberg's AccuWeather forecast, and Rob Powers (in for Scott Clark) with the night's sports.

I hope you can join Sade Baderinwa (in for Liz Cho) and me, tonight at 11. BILL RITTER


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