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Reid Supports Constitutional Amendment to Limit Campaign Spending

PHOTO: U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he supports a proposed constitutional amendment to give control of campaign spending to Congress and the states. Photo courtesy Reid's office.
PHOTO: U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he supports a proposed constitutional amendment to give control of campaign spending to Congress and the states. Photo courtesy Reid's office.
June 4, 2014

CARSON CITY, Nev. - U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., is supporting a proposed constitutional amendment that would give control of campaign spending to Congress and the states.

Reid testified at the Senate Judiciary Committee meeting on Tuesday to discuss the legislation. Senate Joint Resolution 19 would limit political campaign donations that many, including Reid, say are out of control.

"It's still bad for America," Reid said. "It's bad for the body politic. We must undo the damage done by the Supreme Court's recent campaign-finance decision, and we need to do it now."

Supporters of the amendment say Supreme Court rulings - in Buckley vs. Valeo in the 1970s and the more recent Citizens United and McCutcheon cases - have determined that campaign spending is a form of speech or opinion, essentially making a person's campaign donations a First Amendment issue.

Reid told the committee that limiting campaign spending would help restore some balance to American democracy.

"The constitutional amendment also gives the states the authority to institute campaign spending limits at state level," Reid said. "Simply put, the constitutional amendment is what the nation needs to bring sanity back to political campaigns."

Passage of a constitutional amendment is not easy, however. It requires a two-thirds vote in Congress, and support from three-quarters, or 38, of the states.

The text of the resolution is online at scribd.com.

Troy Wilde, Public News Service - NV