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Marcia Coyle is chief Washington correspondent for The National Law Journal, an American Lawyer affiliate.

The worst fears of campaign finance reformers played out in real time on Tuesday in the U.S. Supreme Court as a majority of justices appeared inclined to further erode the regulation of money in elections.

In arguments in McCutcheon and Republican National Committee v. Federal Election Commission, the deep divide on the court over First Amendment speech protection and campaign finance limits—last reflected in the 2010 Citizens United v. FEC decision—surfaced again. This time, the constitutional attack was on federal limits on the total amount of money an individual may contribute to candidates and political groups in a two-year election cycle.

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