Bradley Prize recipient Bradley A. Smith is the Josiah H. Blackmore II/Shirley M. Nault Designated Professor of Law at Capital University Law School in Columbus, Ohio, chairman of the Center for Competitive Politics (CCP) in Alexandria, Va., and a senior fellow at the Goldwater Institute in Phoenix.
One of the nation’s leading authorities on election law and campaign finance, Smith was nominated by President Bill Clinton to a seat on the Federal Election Commission in 2000, where he served for five years, including as chairman in 2004.
Smith authored the widely acclaimed Unfree Speech: The Folly of Campaign Finance Reform in 2002. His writings have appeared in the The Yale Law Journal, The Georgetown Law Journal, theHarvard Journal on Legislation, the University of Pennsylvania Law Review, and other leading law journals. His academic work has been cited in a number of U.S. Supreme Court decisions, including the majority opinion in 2010’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission.
Smith also writes regularly for popular publications, such as The Wall Street Journal,The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and National Review, and he is a frequent guest lecturer at the nation’s law schools. He represented the Inter-American Institute of Human Rights as an election observer overseas and has addressed election officials from developing countries.
In 2002, Smith founded CCP, through which he has filed amicus curiae, or “friend-of-the-court,” briefs in numerous campaign-finance and political-speech cases before the Supreme Court.
Prior to attending Harvard Law School, Smith was U.S. Vice Consul in Ecuador and executive director of the Small Business Association of Michigan.