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Supreme Court Rules for Youth Rights

Written by NYRA Dec 10, 2003

Today the US Supreme Court dealt politically active youth a great victory by striking down the congressional ban on political contributions by people under 18. Using no uncertain terms the Supreme Court stated the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act “which forbids individuals ’17 years old or younger’ to make contributions to candidates and political parties violates the First Amendment rights of minors,” The majority opinion, written by Chief Justice Rehnquist, applied a “heightened scrutiny” standard to the issue and found the Government did not make a strong enough case to withstand that level of scrutiny. The Supreme Court overturned this unconstitutional infringement of the rights of youth by a vote of 9-0. Justice Thomas concurred separately, saying “there is not an iota of evidence supporting the Government’s asserted interests.” NYRA is overjoyed to see this victory for youth rights affirmed by the highest court in the land. The Court even cited Tinker vs. Des Moines, proving that decision is not dead but is still very relevant. The full 300 page decision can be read here. The relevant parts are on page 148 and 149 of the .pdf.

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