A grassroots volunteer signature gathering effort is underway in Washington State for Initiative 735. Initiative 735 is sponsored by WAmend – a coalition of citizen groups working for a US constitutional to overturn Citizens United and other US Supreme Court decisions that have unleashed a flood of money by large donors and special interest groups and corporations.
WAmend is pushing tor an amendment that would declare that corporations are not people and money is not free speech under the US constitution. It wants all political donors to be disclosed and not kept secret and wants the US and states to have the power to regulate money donated in political campaigns.
Volunteers are collecting signatures in 2015 to place Initiative 735 before the Washington State Legislature next year. Valid voter signatures from 8% of those who voted in the last Governor’s race are required to qualify an initiative. That is 246,372 for this cycle. I-735 is targeting to collect 330,000 signatures by the end of the year to cover invalid signatures, including those who sign more than once or who are not registered voters.
If the Washington State Legislature does not enact I-735 it will be placed on the Nov 2016 General Election Ballot. The Legislature can place an alternative on the ballot and voters would vote first to pass an initiative and then pick one of the two versions.
If you would like to sign the initiative you can go to the I-735 website at www.WAmend.org and request a petition be sent to you if there is not a location nearby where you can sign. You can also volunteer to join the campaign and help collect signatures. Volunteers are critical to the success of this effort and are greatly appreciated.
The official ballot title, summary and a link to the actual initiative is below:
Initiative Measure No. 735 concerns a proposed amendment to the federal constitution.
This measure would urge the Washington state congressional delegation to propose a federal constitutional amendment that constitutional rights belong only to individuals, not corporations, and constitutionally-protected free speech excludes the spending of money.
Should this measure be enacted into law? Yes [ ] No [ ]
Ballot Measure Summary
The measure would urge the Washington state congressional delegation to propose a federal constitutional amendment clarifying that constitutional rights belong only to individuals, not corporations; that spending money is not free speech under the First Amendment; that governments are fully empowered to regulate political contributions and expenditures to prevent undue influence; and that political contributions and expenditures must be promptly disclosed to the public. The measure would urge the legislature to ratify such an amendment.