Oregon Ballot Measure 46, Regulation of Campaign Contributions (2006)

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Oregon Ballot Measure 46 was on the November 7, 2006 ballot in Oregon as an initiated constitutional amendment. It was defeated.

If Measure 46 had been approved, it would have amended the Oregon Constitution to allow laws limiting or prohibiting election contributions and expenditures, if any such laws were to be adopted by the state's initiative process or by a 3/4 super-majority vote of both houses of the Oregon State Legislature.

Measure 46, if adopted, would have allowed laws to be passed or amended that would prohibit or limit contributions and expenditures of any kind to influence the outcome of any election. Under the measure, laws could be passed that prohibit or limit how much an individual or entity can give to a candidate for state or local(but not federal) office or other political campaign and how much an individual, entity, candidate or other political campaign can spend to influence the outcome of any state or local election.

Election results

Measure 46
ResultVotesPercentage
Defeatedd No770,25159.68%
Yes 520,342 40.32%
Election results are from Oregon Blue Book website, accessed December 13, 2013

Text of measure

Ballot title

The official ballot title was:

This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.

Amends Constitution: Allows Laws Regulating Election Contributions, Expenditures Adopted by Initiative or 3/4 of Both Legislative Houses[1]

Summary

The official ballot summary was:

This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.

Amends the Oregon Constitution. The Oregon Constitution currently bans laws that impose involuntary limits on, or otherwise prohibit, political campaign contributions or expenditures by any person or any entity. The measure amends the Oregon Constitution to allow laws, if they are enacted or amended through the ballot initiative process or by the Legislative Assembly by a three-fourths vote of both houses, that limit or prohibit campaign contributions and expenditures to influence the outcome of any election. The measure allows such limitations or prohibitions to apply to election contributions and expenditures of any type or description. Other provisions.[1]

Financial impact

The official estimated financial impact statement was:

This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.

There is no financial effect on state or local government expenditures or revenues.[1]

Full text

The full text of the constitutional amendment proposed by Measure 46 was:

This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.

Be it enacted by the People of the State of Oregon, there is added an Article II, Section 24, of the Constitution of Oregon, as follows:

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.[2]

Background and summary

Article 1, section 8, of the Oregon Constitution does not allow laws that prohibit or impose limits on political campaign contributions or expenditures in elections for state or local public office. Under Measure 46, the Oregon legislature or voters by initiative would have had the authority to restrict or limit political campaign contributions and expenditures, subject to federal law.

Ballot Measure 46 would have required a three-fourths (¾) vote of both the Oregon Senate and the Oregon House of Representatives to amend previously enacted laws, or pass new laws, prohibiting or limiting political campaign contributions or expenditures. Ordinarily, a simple majority vote of both the Oregon Senate and Oregon House is required to amend existing laws or pass new laws. Under Measure 46, voters could have, by a simple majority, adopted new laws or amended existing laws prohibiting or limiting political campaign contributions or expenditures.

The measure would not have applied to elections for federal offices, which are President of the United States, United States Senator, and United States Representative. As of 2006, Federal law did not allow states to prohibit or limit contributions or expenditures for or against ballot measures. The measure also would not have affected the free speech guarantee under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.

Support

Supporters

Many in favor of Measure 46 argued that the measure would get "big money" out of Oregon politics. Oregon Secretary of State

Organizations include:

  • Sierra Club
  • Democratic Party of Clackamas County
  • Alliance for Democracy
  • Northwest Progressive Community
  • Pacific Green Party
  • Women's International League for Peace and Freedom
  • Utility Reform Project

Opposition

Opponents

Organizations working to defeat Measure 46 included:

  • ACLU of Oregon
  • American Federation of Teachers-Oregon
  • Basic Rights Oregon
  • Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon
  • Eugene Springfield Solidarity Network
  • NARAL Pro-Choice Oregon
  • Oregon Action
  • Oregon AFL-CIO
  • Oregon Education Association
  • Oregon School Employees Association
  • Our Oregon
  • Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon
  • SEIU/OPEU Locals 49 and 503
  • Stand for Children

Arguments against

Those who opposed Measure 46 did so on the argument that the measure would violate free speech rights. Oregon Secretary of State

Donors

$1,540,180 was donated to the campaign in favor of a "no" vote on Ballot Measure 46 through nine different campaign committees. The same nine committees filed in opposition to Measure 47.

Donors of $50,000 and over were:

Donor Amount
Oregon City Federation of Teachers $360,000
Oregon School Employees Association $275,840
SEIU Local 503 $100,167
Northwest Grocery Association $80,000
Winthrop McCormack $75,000
Our Oregon $50,116
Oregon Restaurant Association $50,000

See also

External links

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