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Franken signs on to constitutional amendment to limit money in politics

Sen. Al Franken and 16 other senators are proposing a constitutional amendment that would return the authority to regulate money in political campaigns to state and federal governments, an ability that was partly undermined by the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizen United decision.

The Senate amendment, which has a recent House counterpart, would give Congress and states the authority to regulate money spent in federal and state political campaigns.

Franken formally signed on to support the Senate amendment last week. It was proposed at the start of November by Sen. Tom Udall of New Mexico.

“Minnesotans’ right to fair and transparent elections have been severely compromised since the Supreme Court held that American corporations can spend unlimited amounts of money on elections ,” Franken told the Minnesota Independent in an email. “This constitutional amendment would authorize Congress to regulate the raising and spending of money in federal and state campaigns, which is why I strongly support it.”

The move comes as a slew of new Super PACs have raised millions of dollars in anticipation of next year’s presidential and congressional races.

In order to become part of the U.S. Constitution, the amendment needs to pass both house of Congress by a two-thirds majority, and then be ratified by three-fourth of state legislatures within seven years.

Here’s the text of the Senate amendment:

‘Article–

‘Section 1. Congress shall have power to regulate the raising and spending of money and in kind equivalents with respect to Federal elections, including through setting limits on–

‘(1) the amount of contributions to candidates for nomination for election to, or for election to, Federal office; and

‘(2) the amount of expenditures that may be made by, in support of, or in opposition to such candidates.

‘Section 2. A State shall have power to regulate the raising and spending of money and in kind equivalents with respect to State elections, including through setting limits on–

‘(1) the amount of contributions to candidates for nomination for election to, or for election to, State office; and

‘(2) the amount of expenditures that may be made by, in support of, or in opposition to such candidates.

‘Section 3. Congress shall have power to implement and enforce this article by appropriate legislation.’.

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