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Protecting Businesses’ Constitutional Rights to Participate in the Political Process

Protect My Check v. Dilger

Case Status

Date Filed

June 18, 2015

Last Step

Victory! Kentucky federal court enjoined the state from enforcing this unequal law.

Next Step

Kentucky issued revised guidelines, allowing corporations, LLCs, and unions to contribute through political action committees.

Case Overview

The laws of six states prohibit businesses—but not unions or other groups—from contributing to political parties, committees, or candidates. This uneven playing field violates constitutional guarantees of equal protection, free speech, and free association. The Goldwater Institute is challenging Massachusetts’ and Kentucky’s corporate contribution bans in order to vindicate the constitutional rights of businesses to participate on equal footing with unions and other groups in the political process. Victory in these cases will advance equal treatment on the political playing field and strengthen the rights of all Americans to participate fully in the political process.

Our client, Protect My Check, Inc., works tirelessly to expand workers’ rights and end compulsory union membership. Unions, for their part, work tirelessly to oppose Protect My Check’s efforts. But in this battle of ideas, only unions can support political candidates. That is not a level playing field and it is unconstitutional.

Case Logistics


Protect My Check, Inc., is a tax-exempt, 501(c)(4) nonprofit, social welfare corporation organized under the laws of Florida. Protect My Check is dedicated to expanding employee rights through legislation that prohibits compulsory unionization.



Craig C. Dilger, Chairman, Kentucky Registry of Election Finance; John Steffen, Executive Director, Kentucky Registry of Election Finance



United States District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky



Gregory F. VanTatenhove


Relief sought

Protect My Check is asking the court to declare the uneven contribution ban unconstitutional and enjoin its enforcement.


Date filed

June 18, 2015

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