Washington House Bill 1645 (1993)

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Washington House Bill 1645 is the Washington state statute passed in 1993 that was held unconstitutional in the case of LIMIT v. Maleng. HB 1645 made it illegal to pay campaign workers who collect signatures for each signature they collect.[1][2]

The case overturning HB 1645 was decided on October 17, 1994, when federal judge Barbara Rothstein struck down the law. Her ruling was not appealed by the state.

Background

In 1988, in the case of Meyer v. Grant, the U.S. Supreme Court had ruled that it violates the First Amendment for a state to outlaw the practice of paying anyone to circulate a petition. The law at issue in that case was from Colorado.

Washington had long had a law similar to the Colorado law ruled unconstitutional in Meyer v. Grant. They believed that the new law they passed in 1993, HB 1645, would salvage as much of the old law as possible.

However, in her ruling in LIMIT v. Maleng, Rothstein noted there was no evidence to support the state's contention that the ban is necessary to eliminate fraud. She noted evidence presented by the plaintiff, that petitions circulated by paid workers have higher validity rates, than petitions circulated by volunteers.

See also

External links

  • Text of HB 1645, the bill that was ruled unconstitutional in LIMIT v. Maleng

References