Justice Anthony Kennedy recently sat down with Harvard Law School Dean Martha Minow for a wide-ranging discussion about the Supreme Court before an audience of Harvard law students. Given the setting, it was perhaps inevitable that Kennedy's majority opinion in the free speech case Citizens United v. FEC was going to come up. But I'm not sure the mostly liberal audience was quite prepared for what Kennedy had to say. As The National Law Journal reports:
Kennedy… in response to a student's question, said he stands by his 2010 decision in the still controversial Citizens United campaign finance case.
"In my own view, what happens with money in politics is not good," he said. "Remember: the government of the United States stood in front our court and said it was lawful and necessary under the [McCain-Feingold] Act to ban a book written about Hillary Clinton in the prohibited period of six, three months before the election. That can't be right.
"I wasn't surprised The New York Times was incensed their little monopoly to affect our thinking was taken away. I was surprised how virulent their attitude was. Last time I looked, The New York Times was a corporation. This meant the Sierra Club, the chamber of commerce in a small town couldn't take out an ad."
Read the whole thing here.