Saturday, April 29, 2006

Appeals Court nixes Initiative 8

The Oregon Court of Appeals handed a two-birds-with-one-stone blow to Petition Initiative 8 this week.

Petition 8 seeks to allow changes to Oregon's campaign finance laws and is the enabling legislation for Petition 37. 37 would impose strict limits on campaign contributions, independent expenditures and political nonprofits. Essentially it would severely curtail the ability of many advocacy groups to participate in Oregon politics. It would specifically hurt choice groups, unions, envionrmental and civil rights groups but would leave many rightwing advocacy groups untouched.

The Oregon Court of Appeals ruled Petition 8 unconstitutional because it would have enacted two distinct and unrelated changes to the State Constitution. This violates the Constitution's rule that each amendment be voted on separately.

An appeal is expected. If not by the State itself, surely by Dan Meek, who is one of its main backers.