Wisconsin pro-life group claims new issue ad legislation is unconstitutional

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January 18, 2010

Wisconsin Constitution
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MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin: Susan Armacost, the Director of Legislation for Wisconsin Right to Life claims that legislation proposed by the Wisconsin State Senate to require disclosure and disclaimers of issue ads funded by Political Action Committees and citizen organizations in Wisconsin is unconstitutional with the pending ruling in the U.S. Supreme Court on Citizens United v. FEC[1]

Armacost called Senate Bill 43 "unacceptable" to the people of Wisconsin claiming that "citizen groups should not reveal data on who donates to their organization in exchange for being granted a unfettered constitutional right." Armacost believes that the ruling in the Citizens United case that may be coming later in January would uphold the rights of citizen groups from not having to disclose who donates to their organizations[1].

Armacost also stated: "it's bad enough that the State Senate leadership supports a bill that is a slap in the face to the First Amendment but to hold a vote on the bill prior to the Court's ruling is both foolhardy and a waste of state resources."[1]

Senate Bill 43 which is expected to be voted on by the Wisconsin Senate on January 19, 2010 requires disclosure for all issue ads in the last 60 days of an election. Violators of the law may be levied with heavy fines and or jail time[1].