In the past few days, pro-lifers were handed two major First Amendment court victories of significant impact.
1. On June 22 an Ohio federal district court judge ruled that a state branch of the powerful pro-abortion National Education Association cannot force teachers to become union members who have religious objections to abortion. (It’s incredibly stupid that a profession would seek to kill off its clientele in the first place .)
This ruling has broader implications, as the AP explained: “An employee whose religious beliefs conflict with the political positions of their labor union cannot be forced to pay dues….”
2. Yesterday the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Wisconsin Right to Life, striking down a portion of McCain-Feingold. I gave the backdrop to this decision April 26.
Explained National Review Online….
McCain-Feingold made it a federal crime for any corporation to broadcast, 30 to 60 days before an election, any communication that mentions a federal candidate for elected office and is aimed relevant voters.
Wisconsin Right to Life is an ideological corporation that accepted funding from other corporations. Its members wanted to run ads in 2004 urging citizens of their state to contact its two senators and urge them to oppose a filibuster of judicial nominees.
Sen. Russ Feingold, one of the senators and a co-author of the law in question, was running for reelection. WRTL’s advertising plans thus constituted a federal crime. At least, they were a crime if the relevant part of McCain-Feingold was constitutional as applied to WRTL.
In fact, McCain-Feingold was constitutionally invalid in this case and probably many others.