At bottom, the court's opinion is thus a rejection of the common sense of the American people, who have recognized a need to prevent corporations from undermining self-government since the founding, and who have fought against the distinctive corrupting potential of corporate electioneering since the days of Theodore Roosevelt. It is a strange time to repudiate that common sense. While American democracy is imperfect, few outside the majority of this court would have thought its flaws included a dearth of corporate money in politics.
Dissenting, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 558 U.S. ___ (2010)
A democracy cannot function effectively when its constituent members believe laws are being bought and sold.John Paul Stevens
After all, a district judge who gives harsh sentences to Yankees fans and lenient sentences to Red Sox fans would not be acting reasonably even if her procedural rulings were impeccable.John Paul Stevens
[B]y requiring that an execution be relatively painless, we necessarily protect the inmate from enduring any punishment that is comparable to the suffering inflicted on his victim. This trend, while appropriate and required by the Eighth Amendment's prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment, actually undermines the very premise on which public approval of the retribution rationale is based.John Paul Stevens