September 9th, 2009
06:41 PM ET
5 years ago

High court hears 'Hillary: The Movie!' campaign finance case

The campaign finance case before the court stems from a film critical of then-presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
The campaign finance case before the court stems from a film critical of then-presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Supreme Court heard new arguments Wednesday in a dramatic case that started with a movie attacking Hillary Clinton - but that could have far-reaching implications for U.S. elections.

"If you thought you knew everything about Hillary Clinton, wait till you see the movie," said an ad last year for "Hillary: The Movie," a scorching attack on the woman then running for president.

Citizens United, the conservative group behind the film, promoted it as featuring 40 interviews - a "cast to end all casts"– and promised that if "you want to hear about the Clinton scandals of the past and present, you have it here! 'Hillary: The Movie' is the first and last word in what the Clintons want America to forget!"

Few Americans ever saw the ad; a federal court ruled that it broke the law on campaign advertising.

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Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Supreme Court
soundoff (46 Responses)
  1. AJ

    The Roberts court will do whatever is best for Republicans, whether its the right thing or not. Its time for the Justices to be chosen by the ABA. At this point it's just a constant struggle between the parties and the justices are chosen more for their political ideals than their legal ideals.

    September 9, 2009 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  2. Jack Martin

    With seven of the nine justices being conservative appointments how do you think this one will turn our? Money talks and you know what walks. Hillary is not one of my favorite people but the attacks on her are a scandal in themselves. The action of the ACLU is why I cancelled my membership years ago.

    September 9, 2009 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  3. joe m

    what's interesting to me is that when individuals like oliver stone or michael moore, who are so openly partisan, produce films like, 'W' or 'SicKo' , put out a product that is clearly meant to be critical of a republican few find these 'movies' as crossing the line. however, when the target is a democrat, issues arise.

    here is my take on all this, dig deep enough into the past of any politician and one will find sufficient material to portray them in the not so best light. if we want to be trully fair there should be some kind of rule or guideline that stories about politicians can only be made after their death, or else any politician, being public figures, are fair game for anyone who wants to be reveal those things they would rather the public not know. otherwise it is just hypocracy for the left to complain when they are as guilty as some on the right.

    September 9, 2009 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  4. Pat in Omaha

    Hilary, you are a strong, intelligent, true public servant!
    You frighten to weaker side...those who rely on fear and hiding the truth...
    those who make rules and break rules at will. Don't worry!

    Even if the Bush court rules against you, there is plenty of "stuff" on the other side to make a movie about them...heck...someone could have a mini-series recounting the eight years of the last president! We could even put together a mini-series about the last presidential campaign!

    Hang in there...you have LOTS of people who appreciate you...and your husband, too!!

    September 9, 2009 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  5. jake

    it's a shame she is not the president, but we got the second best

    September 9, 2009 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
  6. T'SAH from Virginia

    Please – YOU CAN"T BRING the CLINTONS down!!! They bounce right back because they have STRONG beliefs and ROOTS...

    The REPUBLI-CAN'Ts are once again trying to ENCITE a riot because they probably got a WHIM that President Obama may not run in 2012 and Hillary will!!!!!

    Go Hillary 2012 (if President Obama does not run because if he does, I will vote for him again...smile)

    September 9, 2009 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  7. OldUncleTom

    touchy area... we allow "Swift-Boating", but not "documentaries"?

    Aren't Americans smart enough to distinguish between political garbage and reality?

    Probably not, but legislation is no cure for ignorance. Let the games continue...

    September 9, 2009 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  8. JOBLESS IN IOWA

    hey lookie its Hilary, the other crook in the Obama administration.

    September 9, 2009 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  9. S Callahan

    This case is one that should have the attention of every single American citizen that values their individual rights.....glad CNN is posting on it...more details would be nice.

    September 9, 2009 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  10. Chad

    Ok, I voted for Obama and supported him from the get-go in the primaries. But this is ridiculous. A cast to end all casts? Who's in it? Pat Robertson, Ken Starr, Dick Cheney, Monica Lewinsky, Rush Limbaugh, Tony Perkins, and Satan? Come on, look at the source of this.

    September 9, 2009 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  11. joe smith

    it probably would be nice to get the real skinny on the Rose Law Firm, and all that was shoved under the rug, and that got rolled up in a rug, and was found in a D.C. park. Yes the American people need to know who we have trying to control our Nation. sometimes what we are see on the outside, doe not match up with the real facts..

    September 9, 2009 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  12. Retired US Army Officer - Kansas

    I believe in indivdual free speech. However, coporate enities are not individuals, and with the absolutely ridiculus amount of money they are willing to spend to force through their views, if the courts rule that such things in conjunction with political canpaigns is simply an extension of individual free speech, I am afraid that we shall never hear from individuals again as they are drown out and loss what little voice they have to deep pocketed groups promoting their own agendas to elected officials. Good example is health care debate, how much of a voice do you really think you have, we currently have 6 paided lobbiests for each member of Congress, and you think anyone is listening to you.

    September 9, 2009 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  13. Jeremy

    This will be the most SAD moment for american democracy if corporations get their into congress. 10% of exxon Mobil profits is more than the total sum of all presedential candidates used right from primaries to final day! We the people will no longer be making laws but lobbyist will.
    Something of great security concern is that most of these corporations have foreign owners and share holders.....yes Osama,Communist China,Monarchs like in the Arab states will use corporations to define what laws and whatever we do right here in our country!

    September 9, 2009 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  14. Kevin in Ohio

    If this is upheld as against the law, then Michael Moore is sure to go out of business with his politcially slanted "documentaries". Maybe Oliver Stone as well.

    September 9, 2009 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  15. MrEZ

    Ignore the fact that Clinton has anything to do with this case. The most important aspect of this is whether or not corporations will have a Supreme Court mandated cap to how much they can donate to political campaigns. If the Justices remove the cap then the corporations will run roughshod over the will of the people and the America we were raised to love will only exist in our memories.

    September 9, 2009 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  16. fedupwiththe repubs in Texas

    This right leaning court will undoubtedly vote with big business and big money against the American people. Soon our vote will mean nothing, it will be worked out by power brokers.

    September 9, 2009 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  17. Ron , West Coast

    " Screw " those rightwing thugs......

    September 9, 2009 09:47 pm at 9:47 pm |
  18. Jeff Spangler, Arlington, VA

    Money to trash this vile and ambitious political prostitute is well spent.

    September 9, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  19. Paul from Kissimmee

    I hope the movie comes out. Can't wait to see the one about obummer.

    September 9, 2009 10:13 pm at 10:13 pm |
  20. Barry Sax

    As I understand the comments of the Justices, it was obvious that Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, Alito, and Kennedy were leaning toward overterurning settled law that had existed for more than a century, Talk about Activist Judges. They willl do it because they can, and becaiuse it is political and favors Republican interests. I have been a member of the Supreme Court Bar since 1981. Their respect for precedent dependss on the politics of the case. This not the Supreme Court I have loved and admired for so many years.. Shame on them.

    September 9, 2009 10:34 pm at 10:34 pm |
  21. Geri

    Why don't you people leave the Clinton's alone and concentrate on the bad points of the Obamas. This is coming from a democrat who is tired of hearing the rest of you run everyone into the ground. Obama does not walk on water, is not the messiah, and is already making a lot of mistakes. Suck up your party afiliation and see Obama for what he really is.

    September 9, 2009 10:44 pm at 10:44 pm |
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