We’ve seen the framework for the Schumer-Van Hollen legislative proposals in response to Citizens United. It’s certainly one of the details to be worked out, but will the law that ultimately emerges contain what might be called a “Bopp-Olson” provision? The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002’s section 403 provided for expedited review for suits brought on constitutional grounds.
SEC. 403. JUDICIAL REVIEW.
(a) SPECIAL RULES FOR ACTIONS BROUGHT ON CONSTITUTIONAL GROUNDS.—If any action is brought for declaratory or injunctive relief to challenge the constitutionality of any provision of this Act or any amendment made by this Act, the following rules shall apply:
(1) The action shall be filed in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia and shall be heard by a 3-judge court convened pursuant to section 2284 of title 28, United States Code.
(2) A copy of the complaint shall be delivered promptly to the Clerk of the House of Representatives and the Secretary of the Senate.
(3) A final decision in the action shall be reviewable only by appeal directly to the Supreme Court of the United States. Such appeal shall be taken by the filing of a notice of appeal within 10 days, and the filing of a jurisdictional statement within 30 days, of the entry of the final decision.
(4) It shall be the duty of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia and the Supreme Court of the United States to advance on the docket and to expedite to the greatest possible extent the disposition of the action and appeal.
(b) INTERVENTION BY MEMBERS OF CONGRESS.—In any action in which the constitutionality of any provision of this Act or any amendment made by this Act is raised (including but not limited to an action described in subsection (a)), any member of the House of Representatives (including a Delegate or Resident Commissioner to the Congress) or Senate shall have the right to intervene either in support of or opposition to the position of a party to the case regarding the constitutionality of the provision or amendment. To avoid duplication of efforts and reduce the burdens placed on the parties to the action, the court in any such action may make such orders as it considers necessary, including orders to require intervenors taking similar positions to file joint papers or to be represented by a single attorney at oral argument.
(c) CHALLENGE BY MEMBERS OF CONGRESS.—Any Member of Congress may bring an action, subject to the special rules described in subsection (a), for declaratory or injunctive relief to challenge the constitutionality of any provision of this Act or any amendment made by this Act.
(1) INITIAL CLAIMS.—With respect to any action initially filed on or before December 31, 2006, the provisions of subsection (a) shall apply with respect to each action described in such section.
(2) SUBSEQUENT ACTIONS.—With respect to any action initially filed after December 31, 2006, the provisions of subsection (a) shall not apply to any action described in such section unless the person filing such action elects such provisions to apply to the action.
Section 403 was invoked in Citizens United’s December 2007 complaint and less than three years later the Supreme Court’s opinion was announced.