Cite as: 558 U. S. ____ (2010) 1 ROBERTS, C. J., concurring SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES _________________ No. 08–205 _________________ CITIZENS UNITED, APPELLANT v. FEDERAL ELECTION COMMISSION ON APPEAL FROM THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA [January 21, 2010] CHIEF JUSTICE ROBERTS, with whom JUSTICE ALITO joins, concurring. The Government urges us in this case to uphold a direct prohibition on political speech. It asks us to embrace a theory of the First Amendment that would allow censor- ship not only of television and radio broadcasts, but of pamphlets, posters, the Internet, and virtually any other medium that corporations and unions might find useful in expressing their views on matters of public concern. Its theory, if accepted, would empower the Government to prohibit newspapers from running editorials or opinion pieces supporting or opposing candidates for office, so long as the newspapers were owned by corporations—as the major ones are. First Amendment rights could be confined to individuals, subverting the vibrant public discourse that is at the foundation of our democracy. The Court properly rejects that theory, and I join its opinion in full. The First Amendment protects more than just the individual on a soapbox and the lonely pamphle- teer. I write separately to address the important princi- ples of judicial restraint and stare decisis implicated in this case. I Judging the constitutionality of an Act of Congress is
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