Colorado Campaign Finance Law Unconstitutional: Supreme Court

05/22/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

The Colorado Supreme Court has issued an opinion that an amendment to the Colorado Constitution passed overwhelmingly by voters in 2002 is no longer constitutional under a recent ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court.

Amendment 27, passed in 2002 with nearly 70% public support, banned direct corporate or union expenditures to campaigns for state office.
In a landmark January decision (Citizens United v. FEC), the U.S. Supreme Court determined the placement of limits on corporate funding of political campaigns to be unconstitutional under the first amendment. Following the decision, Colorado Governor Bill Ritter requested that the Colorado Supreme court weigh in on Amendment 27's status.

The decision was not unexpected. Jenny Flanagan, director of Colorado Common Cause, a key proponent of Amendment 27 in 2002, told the Denver Post in January: "I think we're very vulnerable given the breadth of the court's decision today on the corporate issues."

The court's decision allows corporations and unions in Colorado to advocate for specific candidates in state elections.


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