Missouri Campaign Contributions Cap Amendment (2014)

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The Missouri Campaign Contributions Cap Amendment did not appear on a 2014 election ballot in the state of Missouri as an initiated constitutional amendment. If approved by voters, this measure, which was filed by the group Missouri Roundtable for Life, would have amended the Missouri Constitution to cap campaign contributions to those running for statewide office or a legislative seat at $2,600. At the time of the initiative's circulation, there were no caps or restrictions on the amount of money that could be contributed to a campaign.[1][2]

Support

This measure was supported by the group Missouri Roundtable for Life, a non-profit, pro-life advocacy organization.[3][4]

Opposition

Rex Sinquefield, a retired financier and frequent contributor to campaigns and candidates in Missouri, filed a lawsuit to prevent the measure from appearing on the ballot. Sinquefield and lobbyist Travis Brown were both listed as plaintiffs. They claimed that "the initiative doesn’t adequately measure the financial impact of the amendment, unfairly restricts free speech and freedom of association and contains unfair language that could manipulate voters." Brown told the Missouri Times, "This ultimately is about freedom of expression and speech. An individual should have the right to express themselves by support or opposition to a candidate or committee."[5]

Lawsuits

See also: List of ballot measure lawsuits in 2013

Rex Sinquefield v. Jason Kander

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Rex Sinquefield, a retired financier and frequent contributor to campaigns and candidates in Missouri, filed a lawsuit to block the Campaign Contributions Cap Amendment from appearing on the 2014 ballot.[5]

Sinquefield and lobbyist Travis Brown were both listed as plaintiffs. They claimed that "the initiative doesn’t adequately measure the financial impact of the amendment, unfairly restricts free speech and freedom of association and contains unfair language that could manipulate voters." Brown told the Missouri Times, "This ultimately is about freedom of expression and speech. An individual should have the right to express themselves by support or opposition to a candidate or committee." Sec. of State Jason Kander responded, saying he believed the language of the measure would be upheld in court. Courts have historically struck down attempts to limit campaign contributions, saying that the ability to donate money to campaigns and candidates is a form of free expression, which is protected by the first amendment.[5]

Path to the ballot

See also: Amending the Missouri Constitution

On Wednesday, June 12, 2013, the Secretary of State approved the measure for circulation. The supporting group had until May 4, 2014, to turn in the required number of valid signatures. Missouri law states that signatures must be obtained from registered voters equal to eight percent of the total votes cast in the 2012 governor's election from six of the state's eight congressional districts, meaning supporters must submit at least 157,788 valid signatures by the May deadline.[1]

See also

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