(CNN) - The Supreme Court has blocked enforcement of a ruling by Montana's highest court that upholds the state's century-long restrictions on independent political spending by outside groups in election campaigns.
An order was issued late Friday.
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Opponents of the restrictions say they conflict with the Supreme Court's landmark free speech ruling in 2010 that gave corporations greater power to spend their own money in federal elections.
That has led to a proliferation of so-called super PACs spending contributions of businesses, unions, and advocacy groups, and wealthy individuals.
The justices are now being asked whether state restrictions, as in the Montana case, should also be tossed out. Until the high court decides whether to tackle the issue, the current restrictions are suspended.
The Montana Supreme Court made its ruling December 30, saying there was a legitimate state interest to ensure independent expenditures by corporations "do not give rise to corruption or the appearance of corruption."
The case is American Tradition Partnership Inc. v. Bullock (11A762).