For those who assume that increased regulation of political spending is inevitable in democratic nations, recent developments in U.S. campaign finance law appear puzzling. Is deregulation, exemplified by the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. FEC, a harbinger of things to come elsewhere or further evidence that the United States remains an anomaly?
In this volume, experts on the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Australia, Germany, Sweden, France, and several other European nations explore what deregulation means in the context of political campaigns and demonstrate how such comparisons can inform the study of campaign finance in the U.S. Whereas the contributors do not settle on any single theory of change in campaign finance law or any single perspective on the relationship between changes seen in the U.S. and those in other nations over the past decade, they do concur that the U.S. is rapidly retreating from the types of regulations that defined campaign finance law in most democratic nations during the latter decades of the twentieth century. By tracing and analyzing the recent history of regulation, the contributors shed light on many pressing topics, including the relationship between public opinion and campaign finance law, the role of scandals in inspiring reform, and the changing incentives of political parties, interest groups, and the courts.
“The Deregulatory Moment contains a judiciously selected mix of established names in the field and fresh voices, each of them approaching familiar questions in new and interesting ways.”
—Andrew Geddis, University of Otago
“Boatright and his collaborators provide a central organizing question and analytical framework for all the essays. They raise excellent and difficult questions to be faced by the regulatory regimes with respect to global corporations, the internet, and labor migration of non-nationals across borders.”
—Ray La Raja, University of Massachusetts–Amherst
“This is an important book. If we have regulatory ‘moments’—where the rules of campaign finance can be expanded—do we have deregulatory ones too? Is the United States experiencing such a moment alone? The chapters on these questions—covering a range of comparative cases—are illuminating and beautifully written. This book is a delight to read and should be mandatory for any student of campaign finance.”
—Michael Franz, Bowdoin College