Tuesday, July 01, 2014

In Hobby Lobby ruling, the Supreme Court uses a ‘fiction’

Dana Milbank, WashPost
June 30 at 9:27 PM

Mitt Romney said it, and on Monday the Supreme Court upheld it: Corporations are people, my friend.

The 2012 Republican presidential nominee was jeered when he made the claim in 2011 at the Iowa State Fair. But somewhere, perhaps in his $55,000 car elevator in La Jolla, the businessman-politician is laughing.

In its last day in session, the high court not only affirmed corporate personhood but expanded the human rights of corporations, who by some measures enjoy more protections than mortals — or “natural persons,” as the court calls the type of people who do not incorporate in Delaware. In 2010, the court ruled that corporations are people for the purposes of making unrestricted political contributions. Now, the court has decided that some corporations have religious beliefs, just like other people.

“The purpose of extending rights to corporations is to protect the rights of people associated with the corporation, including shareholders, officers, and employees,” Justice Samuel Alito wrote in the much-anticipated Hobby Lobby decision. “Protecting the free-exercise rights of closely held corporations thus protects the religious liberty of the humans who own and control them.”

(More here.)

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