March 8, 2004
Backs First Amendment Restoration Act
Congress to Strike Limits on Free Speech
VA The Center for Individual Freedom today announced
its support for H.R.3801, the First Amendment Restoration Act of
2004. The bill, introduced by Rep. Roscoe Bartlett (R-MD), would
repeal provisions of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002
(BCRA) which silence interest groups in the days leading up to elections.
begins to repair the damage that BCRA did to our First Amendment
rights," said Marshall Manson, the Centers Vice President
of Public Affairs. "Our founders specifically sought to protect
political speech and the right to criticize government. BCRA undermines
the First Amendment as it silences organizations like ours at times
when such speech is most important. The Center supports this bill,
and any other attempts to undo BCRAs damage."
labor unions, corporations, non-profit groups, and others to pay
for "electioneering communications" through Political
Action Committees with contributions subject to federal limits.
Electioneering communications include any broadcast, cable, or satellite
communication that refers to a clearly identified federal candidate
within thirty days of a primary or sixty days of a general election.
should not be in the business of regulating, in any way, what citizens
say about government. And in the case of BCRA, weve gone beyond
regulation to brazen prevention of speech. Its a direct attack
on citizens individual liberty," said Manson. "Since
the Courts wont act to protect our rights, its time
for Congress to do so."
for Individual Freedom is a nonpartisan constitutional advocacy
group dedicated to protecting and defending individual freedoms
and rights in the legal, legislative and educational arenas. The
Center has been a consistent opponent of BCRA and was a plaintiff
in McConnell v. FEC.