Solicitor General Weighs In at Supreme Court on Hillary: The Movie

Solicitor General Paul Clement asked the Supreme Court to deny the appeal of a rule that required a foe of Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) to identify itself in broadcast ads taking aim at the candidate.

According to a copy of the government's brief, Clement said the court lacks jurisdiction, but even if it does have jurisdiction, it should deny the appeal or affirm a lower court's finding upholding the disclaimers.

The Supreme Court has not decided yet whether or not to hear the appeal, but it asked the parties for new briefs in Citizen's United's challenge of a Federal Election Commission decision that disclosure requirements apply to the group’s broadcast promos for its Hillary: The Movie film, which is sharply critical of the Democratic presidential candidate and which it is distributing in theaters, on video-on-demand and on DVD in the presidential primary states.

Citizen's United is a veteran Bush-backing, Clinton-bashing group that petitioned the court after a three-judge district-court panel in January refused to grant an injunction against campaign-finance-law requirements that it must put disclaimers on the ads and disclose their funding. The group is challenging campaign-finance-reform laws that put disclosure and disclaimer requirements on so-called electioneering communications.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.