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The Constitution of Electoral Speech LawThe Supreme Court and Freedom of Expression in Campaigns and Elections$
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Brian K. Pinaire

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780804757249

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804757249.001.0001

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Conceptual Confluence

Conceptual Confluence

(p.39) Chapter 2 Conceptual Confluence
The Constitution of Electoral Speech Law
Stanford University Press

This chapter examines the outcomes and implications of “conceptual confluence,” or the phenomenon whereby two relatively autonomous lines of doctrine—electoral process and free speech law—have merged and melded, affording an accommodation of the values and precepts central to both jurisprudential traditions. While cases involving free speech claims within the electoral process might be appealed to the Court as “speech” cases rather than “process” cases, it is argued that issues of electoral expression are intrinsically different from speech cases outside this domain. Thus, efforts to decouple “speech” from “process” law will, as an intellectual endeavor, fail to appreciate the particular essence of the intersection and development of the two—as one—over time.

Keywords:   conceptual confluence, electoral process, free speech law, electoral expression, free speech

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