Document Type


Publication Title

Berkeley Journal of International Law

Publication Date



Broadcast Media, Social Networking, Lobbying, Self-Government, Legal Framework


This Essay explores a fascinating new truth: because of the Internet, governments, corporations, and citizens of other countries can now meaningfully participate in United States elections. They can phone bank, editorialize, and organize in ways that impact a candidate's image, the narrative structure of a campaign, and the mobilization of base support. Foreign governments can bankroll newspapers that will be read by millions of voters. Foreign companies can enlist employees in massive cross-continental email campaigns. Foreign activists can set up offline meetings and organize door-to-door campaigns in central Ohio. They can, in short, influence who wins and who loses. Depending upon your intuitions, this might seem like a very good thing, or the beginning of the end of democratic self-governance. While this has yet to occur on a massive scale, signs abound that extraterritorial electioneering is beginning.