Supreme Court Strikes Down California Donor Disclosure Law

A woman walks past the Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C., May 17, 2021. (Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)

In a 6-3 ruling breaking down along ideological lines, the Supreme Court ruled that a California law mandating that charities disclose some of their biggest donors to the state attorney general’s office violated the First Amendment.

The majority opinion in Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Bonta, authored by Chief Justice John Roberts, asserts that “the deterrent effect” of the law on donors “is real and pervasive.” While the justices voted — in judgment — along partisan lines, progressive groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union and Council on American-Islamic Relations advocated for the same outcome the conservative justices reached in amicus briefs.

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