Buckley v. Valeo
United States Supreme Court
424 U.S. 1 (1976)
The Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 (FECA), as amended in 1974, limited the amount of individual and group political contributions. Contributions and expenditures above certain threshold levels had to be reported and publicly disclosed. A system for public funding of Presidential campaign activities was established, and a Federal Election Commission (FEC) was established to administer and enforce the legislation. The FEC was composed of two members appointed by the President pro tempore of the Senate, two members appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and two members appointed by the President. The Secretary of the Senate and the Clerk of the House of Representatives were ex officio members without voting privileges. Senator James L. Buckley (plaintiff) filed a lawsuit against Francis Valeo (defendant), a representative of the FEC, in federal district court on the grounds that (1) the FECA violated the First Amendment’s protection of the freedom of speech and that (2) given the FEC’s broad rulemaking and enforcement powers, the separation of powers doctrine precluded Congress from giving itself authority to appoint the commission’s members. The district court denied relief, and the court of appeals affirmed. Buckley appealed to the United States Supreme Court.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Per curiam)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 148,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 13,300 briefs, keyed to 182 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.