Thursday, July 13, 2006

Should ballot measure initiatives be funded with out of state money?

An interesting article yesterday in the Statesman Journal titled "Handful of people bankrolls state measures" points out how much money comes from out of state to fund in state ballot measures.

I've long felt that the size of contributions to candidates should be unlimited, but there should be instant and full disclosure, and no contributions to in state candidates can come from outside the state, or maybe even more strict, no money can come from outside of the candidates district.

But then that leads to a couple of other issues. 1) How do you deal with interest groups, and 2) how do you address the funding of ballot measures?

What about people like Loren Parks. He lived in the state of Oregon for many years, made his money here, but for the last few years has lived in Nevada. I'm sure that he still has businesses here, owns property here, and still has many ties to Oregon, so shouldn't he still be able to be active in Oregon politics.

Then there are nationally run companies, headquartered somewhere else in the United States that could be effected by a candidate's policies, or by a ballot initiative passing or failing. For example, wouldn't you expect that all three big auto makers to weigh in on issues relating to auto related transportation? What about cell phone companies fighting cell phone taxes.

These questions would then extend to political Action Committees and other interest groups. Wouldn't one expect the NRA to make it's voice heard if a governmental body in Oregon were to try to ban hand guns within it's jurisdiction?

What sounds like a simple solution gets muddy and complicated real fast.

I found this via Mike Caudle's blog in a post titled "New Conservative Coalition in Oregon Has Abramoff Ties"

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