MultDems Call to Action: End Pay to Play, support SB 18 and SB 19

Summary

This year the governor, and state legislatures have made a commitment to tackle changing our state constitution so we as Oregonians can limit campaign contributions. Let’s get it done this session. Call your state representatives and senators and tell them it is time to end pay to play in this state. We want to know where the money is coming from and put caps like 40 other states have. We are among the 10 who have UNLIMITED contributions.

Take action

Contact your elected officials!

State: Contact your state legislatures and ask them to support SB 18 and SB 19

Background

Lawmakers from both parties have proposed wide-ranging reforms that could transform the way election campaigns are conducted in Oregon.

There are more than a few obstacles to overcome along the way, though. The most significant might be the state Constitution itself.

In Oregon, campaign finance reform requires more than changing state law. That’s because of legal precedent set by the Oregon Supreme Court in 1997, when justices struck down limits on campaign contributions as violating Oregon’s constitutional right to free speech.

A trio of Democratic state representatives has proposed a constitutional amendment that would allow state and local governments to regulate campaign spending by limiting contributions to political campaigns and mandating that advertisements and campaign materials name who paid for them.

In the Senate, Beaverton Democrat Mark Hass and Bend Republican Tim Knopp have proposed Senate Joint Resolution 18, a similar constitutional amendment to what Rayfield and Reps. Alissa Keny-Guyer, D-Portland, and Pam Marsh, D-Ashland, have put forward in the House.

SB18 Proposes amendment to Oregon Constitution specifying that Legislative Assembly, or people through initiative process, may enact laws limiting or prohibiting certain contributions made to candidates for public office. and SB19, caps on contributions

Income taxes — personal and corporate — account for more than nine out of every 10 dollars that flow into Oregon’s General Fund budget, the principal way Oregon pays for services like education and other essential services. But it is the personal income tax, which individuals and families pay, that brings in the lion’s share of the public resources. In 2016, the personal income tax brought in about $7.6 billion. By contrast, the corporate income tax brought in $541 million, with the corporate minimum tax accounting for $54 million of that amount.

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