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Oregon Voters Could Consider Caps On Campaign Contributions

Oregon Governor Kate Brown addresses the Senate Rules Committee as they consider campaign finance reform legislation.
Office of the Governor
Oregon Governor Kate Brown addresses the Senate Rules Committee as they consider campaign finance reform legislation.

State lawmakers are considering a measure that would ask voters in 2016 to approve limits on a campaign contributions.

Oregon is one of a half-dozen states that places no limit on how much people and corporations can donate to political campaigns. The proposal has the support of Oregon Governor Kate Brown, who testified in favor of the measure to a Senate panel Tuesday.

"No one should be able to buy a megaphone so big that it drowns out every other voice,” the governor said. “The First Amendment was intended to protect political discourse for all Oregonians, not just those with the deepest pockets."

Opponents say campaign contribution limits would actually put more power in the hands of special interest groups that can run independent campaigns unconnected to a particular candidate.

Both Washington and Idaho limit how much money individuals and companies can donate to political campaigns.

Copyright 2015 Northwest News Network

Chris Lehman graduated from Temple University with a journalism degree in 1997. He landed his first job less than a month later, producing arts stories for Red River Public Radio in Shreveport, Louisiana. Three years later he headed north to DeKalb, Illinois, where he worked as a reporter and announcer for NPR–affiliate WNIJ–FM. In 2006 he headed west to become the Salem Correspondent for the Northwest News Network.