Powerful forces in the Maine Legislature are on track to ROLL BACK a critical reform, and we need your help to STOP them. Here's what happened.
Last week, the Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee voted and passed an amendment to LD 726 that would repeal our priority bill from last year — the corporate contribution ban, LD 1417. Repealing this would reopen the gates for big corporate money to flow directly to Maine candidates and legislators. We can’t let this stand; we will not go backwards.
We fought to pass the corporate contribution ban because we strongly believe that Mainers deserve representatives that listen to them, not corporate special interests. Corporations often use political contributions to tip the playing field in their favor. That's not fair, and our corporate contribution ban was written to address this issue. Repealing our bill not only makes little sense, it dismantles the work of the previous Legislature that passed it. We want to move forward, not backward.
Legislators who think this bill should be repealed will argue that money flows between PACs regardless of a ban. “The money finds a way.” We reject this thinking, but if legislators feel this way, they should consider strengthening the bill, expanding the ban to include caucus PACs and party committees, as well as candidates and leadership PACs. If these legislators want to limit the influence of corporate interests, get dirty money out of politics, and protect Maine’s elections, then let’s work on something that moves us forward, not backward.
LD 726 as amended will soon be reported out of committee and head to both chambers for its floor votes in the Senate and the House.
We’re asking that legislators reject the forthcoming committee amendment to LD 726 and preserve the corporate contribution ban. We need your help. Let's stand up for what's right.
Together, we can make a difference:
Contact your legislators:
Use this form to contact your legislators and urge them to oppose LD 726 and keep the corporate contribution ban in place. It's quick. It's easy. It'll only take a few minutes.
Bottomline: LD 1417 (our bill from the previous session) limited corporate contributions to candidates and leadership PACs. According to the Federal Election Commission, “A leadership PAC is a political committee that is directly or indirectly established, financed, maintained or controlled by a candidate or an individual holding a federal office.”
It can be a yucky thing for an individual to have who wants to spend money to influence our elections. More than a third of money raised by legislator-controlled PACs comes from corporate sources. Federal law and 22 other states prohibit corporate contributions to candidates. Maine was lagging behind until LD 1417 was put into place. Repealing the corporate contribution ban will undo this work and send Maine heading in the wrong direction.