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Money in politics will be on ballot Tuesday in the city of La Crosse.

After gathering 3,600 signatures in a grassroots campaign, La Crosse United to Amend succeeded in getting an advisory referendum on the ballot to allow voters to weigh in on whether to call for a constitutional amendment declaring that only human beings are endowed with constitutional rights, not corporations, unions, nonprofits or other artificial entities; and money is not speech, and regulating political contributions and spending is not equivalent to limiting political speech.

La Crosse United to Amend is a local branch of a statewide nonpartisan organization dedicated to overturning the 2010 Citizens United v. Federal Elections Commission decision by U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled that corporations can spend an unlimited amount of money to support a politician or party, provided that money isn’t given directly to the politician or party. The court argued that capping that spending would muzzle the free speech rights of corporations.

The group hopes to amend the U.S. Constitution to clarify that corporations are not entitled to the same rights as people and to limit the amount they can spend on behalf of political candidates and parties.

A “yes” vote on the referendum indicates support for the amendment and “no” indicates disapproval.

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La Crosse city government reporter

Jourdan Vian is a reporter and columnist covering local government and city issues for the La Crosse Tribune. You can contact her at 608-791-8218.

(2) comments

Dave from Wisc

I also agree there is way too much money in politics, but I see two problems with this. One is that organizations will just find a way around it. Do you think AFSCME will stop political activity?
The other is.....if the people can't band together to try to influence politics, why should media be exempt? If the La Crosse Tribune decides to promote one point of view, how do we counter it? Under this proposal, we can put our money together to buy a full page ad to present a different view.

Dave from Wisc

Reply to my post...meant we "can't" pool our money to present a different view point under this proposal.

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