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First Amendment

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Democratizing The Economic Sphere: A Case For The Political Boycott, Theresa J. Lee Mar 2012

Democratizing The Economic Sphere: A Case For The Political Boycott, Theresa J. Lee

Lecturer and Other Affiliate Scholarship Series

The political boycott, though recently under attack through litigation aimed at compelled disclosure regimes, is a critical tool in constructing American democracy. Defining political boycotts as those refusals by consumers to buy goods or patronize business in order to effect political or social change, this Article is the first paper to place the political boycott at home in all three classic theories underlying the First Amendment: the marketplace of ideas, democracy and self-governance, and self-expression and autonomy. It also places the boycott alongside current campaign finance doctrine via Citizens United v. FEC. Just as money amassed by corporations in the ...