McIntyre v. Ohio Elections Comm'n, 514 U.S. 334, 2 (1995)

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Cite as: 514 U. S. 334 (1995)


upholding the restriction only if it is narrowly tailored to serve an overriding state interest. See, e. g., id., at 786. Pp. 343-347. (c) Section 3599.09(A)'s anonymous speech ban is not justified by Ohio's asserted interests in preventing fraudulent and libelous statements and in providing the electorate with relevant information. The claimed informational interest is plainly insufficient to support the statute's disclosure requirement, since the speaker's identity is no different from other components of a document's contents that the author is free to include or exclude, and the author's name and address add little to the reader's ability to evaluate the document in the case of a handbill written by a private citizen unknown to the reader. Moreover, the state interest in preventing fraud and libel (which Ohio vindicates by means of other, more direct prohibitions) does not justify 3599.09(A)'s extremely broad prohibition of anonymous leaflets. The statute encompasses all documents, regardless of whether they are arguably false or misleading. Although a State might somehow demonstrate that its enforcement interests justify a more limited identification requirement, Ohio has not met that burden here. Pp. 348-353. (d) This Court's opinions in Bellotti, 435 U. S., at 792, n. 32—which commented in dicta on the prophylactic effect of requiring identification of the source of corporate campaign advertising—and Buckley v. Valeo, 424 U. S. 1, 75-76—which approved mandatory disclosure of campaign-related expenditures—do not establish the constitutionality of 3599.09(A), since neither case involved a prohibition of anonymous campaign literature. Pp. 353-356.

67 Ohio St. 3d 391, 618 N. E. 2d 152, reversed.

Stevens, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which O'Connor, Kennedy, Souter, Ginsburg, and Breyer, JJ., joined. Ginsburg, J., filed a concurring opinion, post, p. 358. Thomas, J., filed an opinion concurring in the judgment, post, p. 358. Scalia, J., filed a dissenting opinion, in which Rehnquist, C. J., joined, post, p. 371.

David Goldberger argued the cause for petitioner. With him on the briefs were George Q. Vaile, Steven R. Shapiro, Joel M. Gora, Barbara P. O'Toole, and Louis A. Jacobs.

Andrew I. Sutter, Assistant Attorney General of Ohio, argued the cause for respondent. With him on the briefs were Lee Fisher, Attorney General, Andrew S. Bergman, Robert A. Zimmerman, and James M. Harrison, Assistant At-


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