Because Oregon is only one of five
states with no limitations on campaign contributions or expenditures,
special interests run a-mock here. Passage of these two new
initiatives will end MAD CASH DISEASE in Oregon. They
will remove corporations and the wealthy from their current special
position in our elections; they will return us to government of, by and
for the people.
David e. Delk, Co-chair, Alliance for
CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM
Oregon has no
limitations on campaign contributions or expenditures, one of only 5
states in that condition.
That was not
always been the case. In 1996, Oregon through the initiative
process enacted CFR only to have the Oregon Supreme Court throw the
measure out. They said such laws were a violation of free
speech. And since that time campaigns have gotten more and more
expensive. Corporations have pushed up the total reported
spending on political races in Oregon from $4.2 million in 1996 to $49
million in 2002.
And the voice of
the people has been replaced by the voice of special interests. Special
interests like Enron. Special interests like Big Pharma.
Special interests that give away our tax revenues in the form of tax
"credits" to multinational corporations. Special interests like
the Oregon Restaurant Associations. In 2004, the Oregon Lottery
Commission disregarded its own study, showing that Canadian provinces
pay video poker outlets commissions of 15% of the money taken in,
instead of the 32% paid in Oregon.
So video poker
parlors get to keep an extra $85 million per year that should be going
to schools. Why?
answers to the politicians, and the Oregon Restaurant Association
contributed over $1.2 million to them in the last 3 elections.
Oregonians are now fighting back!
gathering has begun on two initiatives for Campaign Finance
Reform. One of those is a single line constitutional amendment
(Petition #8). The other is a statute which puts in place the
limitations which are missing today (Petition #37)..
Petition #8 - a constitutional amendment
Petition #8 is
very simple - a single sentence: "Notwithstanding any other
provision of this Constitution, the people through the initiative
process, or the Legislative Assembly by a three-fourths vote of both
Houses, may enact and amend laws to prohibit or limit contributions and
expenditures, of any type or description, to influence the outcome of
any election." (Note: AfD national vice-co chair, David e. Delk,
is chief Petitioner on this one)
sentence gives the people the right to enact limitations on campaign
contributions and expenditures. It places that right in the
Oregon Constitution where it is protected from the Oregon Supreme
Court. It is also protected from the legislature. The
legislature can enact such laws as well but only with a super
majority. In 2004, in Ohio, the legislature changed the campaign
finance laws to increase the amount which an individual could
donate four fold from $2,500 to $10,000. Most people do not come
close to making a contribution of $2,500. Increasing it is only
benefits special interests, interests seeking special benefits from
elected officials. In Ohio that change in law happened with a
simple majority vote; in Oregon a super majority of 3/4 vote would be
required. (Note that this single sentence allows us to change the
laws regarding both candidate campaigns and initiative campaigns.
At this time the second petition affects candidate campaigns only).
Petition #37 - a statute
Petition 37 is a
statute and much more complex. In broad outline, it:
O Bans all corporate and union contributions
O Limits individual contributions. Those limits are
O $500 per election period (primary + General); $100 for all
O Aggregate contributions from individuals to all candidates and
committees are limited to $2500/year.
O Limits contributions by political committees and political
parties to candidates.
O Allows formation of Small Donor Committees. These
committees can accept contributions of no more than $50.00 per
individual member per year. They are allowed to spend that money
on candidate elections however they like. Membership
organizations (think Sierra Club, for instance or labor unions) are
allowed to form SDCs and then transfer up to $50/member to the SDC.
O Limits amount a candidate can contribute to his/her our
campaign to at most $50,000 per election period campaigns for statewide
office; $10,000 for all other offices. Non-incumbents can
increase this limit by 50%.
O Permits independent expenditures only by the sources above and
limited to $10,000 per individual. Corporations cannot make
independent expenditures for candidate races.
O Requires strict reporting of contributions and expenditures
with disclosure before the election, instead of after the election as
is the current case.
O Requires that major contributors to candidates or independent
expenditures be cited in all print or electronic ads.
Join the Campaign to End Mad Cash Disease
Your help is
needed now! Here is how to help:
O If your live in Oregon, contact David Delk at
email@example.com or at 503 232 5495 to get copies of the text
and the signatures sheets. Collect some signatures for this
effort to reclaim our democracy.
O Learn more about the measures and the need for them at
O Make a money contribution to the campaign. Contributions can be
made out to Fair Elections Oregon and mailed to
P.O. Box 8488
Portland, OR 97207
Make sure your
check shows your name and address. Please include a note indicating
your occupation, which can be "retired." And a phone number is helpful
in case you need to be contacted.
Political Tax Credit: An individual with taxable Oregon income of
$2,400 or more can give up to $50 to political campaigns and get it all
back (every dollar) as a state income tax credit. A couple filing a
joint return can give $100 and get it all back, if their income
is at least $4,800. Those with lower incomes can get back amounts
contributed, up to their total state income tax withheld or otherwise
resources for this effort:
Elections www.fairelections.net (This is the official
website for the campaign)