SENATE COMMITTEE ON RULES

 

 

March 04, 2003                                                                                                   Hearing Room 343

3:00 p.m.                                                                                                                      Tapes  16 - 17

 

MEMBERS PRESENT:         Sen. Kate Brown, Co-chair, Presiding

Sen. Bev Clarno, Co-chair

Sen. Jason Atkinson, Vice-chair

Sen. Ginny Burdick, Vice-chair

Sen. Roger Beyer

Sen. Tony Corcoran

 

STAFF PRESENT:                 Jim Stembridge, Committee Administrator

Pam Cox, Committee Assistant

 

MEASURE/ISSUES:              SJR 3 – Public Hearing

SB 379 – Public Hearing

SJR 15 – Public Hearing

SJR 10 – Public Hearing

SJR 20 – Public Hearing

 

These minutes are in compliance with Senate and House Rules.  Only text enclosed in quotation marks reports a speaker’s exact words.  For complete contents, please refer to the tapes.

 

TAPE#

Speaker

Comments

TAPE 16, A

005

Co-chair Brown

Calls meeting to order at 3:10  p.m.  Opens public hearing on SJR 3, SB 379, SJR 15, SJR 10 and SJR 20.

SJR 3, SB 379, SJR 15, SJR 10, SJR 20 – PUBLIC HEARING

006

Ted Reutlinger

Senior Deputy, Legislative Counsel.  Offers a brief overview of  the amendment process for changes to the Constitution.

092

Sen. Burdick

Asks about the limits on campaign spending.

110

Reutlinger

Answers under the current law it is impossible to limit expenditures.

129

Sen. Charlie Ringo

District 17.  Testifies in support of SJR 20, which proposes amendment to Oregon Constitution to allow Legislative Assembly, or people through initiative process, to enact laws limiting or prohibiting certain contributions made in connection with financing of election campaigns.  Describes the amount of funds used and the influence of political contributions in his legislative race.

174

Sen. Kurt Schrader

District 20.  Testifies in support of all bills.  Describes the excessive costs of campaigning and explains that these bills will bring back trust of the voters. 

237

Rep. Max Williams

District 35.  Testifies in support of measures.  Explains Oregon is one of five states that have no limitations on campaign spending.

354

Sen. Burdick

Asks if steps could be taken in reporting to control expenditures.

355

Rep. Williams

Explains reporting is the only viable method.

371

Sen. Schrader

Agrees.

383

Sen. Atkinson

Comments on costs for the vote-by-mail process and notes a work group will be put together for these bills.

416

Rep. Williams

Acknowledges vote-by-mail has increased the costs of campaigning.

420

Sen. Burdick

Asks if he would be in favor of making the limits statutory.

426

Rep. Williams

Responds to additional protections.

TAPE 17, A

009

Sen. Richard Devlin

District 19.  Testifies in favor of SJR 15, which proposes amendment to Oregon Constitution specifying that Legislative Assembly, or people through initiative process, may enact laws limiting certain contributions made to candidates for public office.  Points out significant increase in campaign costs and comments on the targeted expenditure figures.

097

Sen. Corcoran

Asks for clarification regarding the proposed amendment.

101

Sen. Devlin

Answers Governor would still have veto power.

102

Sen. Corcoran

Asks if that would apply to a referral.

103

Sen. Devlin

Answers it would not.

105

Sen. Corcoran

Asks about protections on referral process.

114

Sen. Devlin

Clarifies the impacts.

127

Rep. Mark Hass

District 27. Testifies in support of SJR 20 and submits written testimony (EXHIBIT A).

161

Don Bishoff

Legislative Assistant to Sen. Bill Morrisette.  Expresses Sen. Morrisette’s support for all the bills.  Suggests the amendments would improve campaign financing.

202

John Lindback

Elections Division, Secretary of State.  Testifies in support of SB 379, which defines express advocacy for purpose of determining whether communication qualifies as independent expenditure; and SJR 3, which proposes amendment to Oregon Constitution to establish political contribution limits.  Submits conceptual amendments on these bills (EXHIBIT B).

238

Janice Thompson

Executive Director, Money in Politics Research Action Project (MIPRAP).  Testifies in support of SJR 3 and SJR 15.  Suggests wording changes and submits a graph (EXHIBIT C).

281

Sen. Corcoran

Asks about unfair limitations.

282

Thompson

Answers and continues explaining wording changes on SJR 15. 

367

Sen. Corcoran

Asks why there was not a figure on independent expenditures on her graph.

368

Thompson

Offers an explanation on years where figures were left out.

TAPE 16, B

020

Thompson

Continues and discusses tracking of independent contributions.

045

Sen. Corcoran

Asks what states have the better laws.

047

Thompson

Notes Maine, Arizona and North Carolina.

050

Sen. Corcoran

Asks if any of the language on today’s measures resembles these states’ laws.

052

Thompson

Responds it does not.

055

Co-chair Brown

Asks if part of the puzzle is to afford to run for office.

060

Thompson

Answers the reform is still not a panacea.

066

Norman Turrill

League of Women Voters of Oregon.  Testifies in support of SJR 10, which proposes amendment to Oregon Constitution to allow Legislative Assembly, or people through initiative process, to enact laws limiting or prohibiting certain contributions made in connection with financing of election campaigns.  Testifies in support of SJR 3, SJR 15 and SJR 20.  Notes the Constitution needs to be amended to add limits to campaign spending.  Submits written testimony (EXHIBITS D, E).

121

Steve Lanning

Oregon AFL-CIO.  Testifies in opposition to SJR 3 and summarizes how it will affect large unions.

171

David Fidanque

American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Oregon.  Testifies in opposition to SJR 3, SJR 15, SJR 10, SJR 20 and SB 379.  Explains these proposed bills could be handled differently without changing the Constitution.

293

Sen. Corcoran

Asks about the ACLU’s position on the issue of hit pieces without attribution.

294

Fidanque

Answers free speech is protected by the first amendment, which was written to protect anonymous speech.

370

Sen. Corcoran

Asks for clarification on anonymity if rich industrialists make large contributions

384

Fidanque

Notes he does not suggest money is free speech or that making a contribution is an expression of political support.

TAPE 17, B

001

Fidanque

Continues.

026

Co-chair Brown

Asks if public financing is pragmatic.

027

Fidanque

Answers he does not believe these bills are the answer.

046

Andi Miller

Executive Director, Common Cause Oregon.  Submits written testimony and defers to David Buchanon (EXHIBIT F).  

051

David Buchanon

Former Executive Director of Common Cause Oregon.  Testifies in support of SJR 20 and explains the loss of spending limits in Oregon in 1973.

180

Sen. Burdick

Expresses appreciation for the explanation of Oregon’s history on losing spending limits.

200

Joe Keizur

Political Director, Democratic Party of Oregon.  Testifies in support of these bills.  Explains the law on campaign spending has too many loopholes.  Suggests forming a workgroup to combine these bills.

230

Co-chair Brown

Closes public hearing on SJR 3, SB 379, SJR 15, SJR 10, and SJR 20.  Adjourns committee meeting at 4:43 p.m.

 


 

EXHIBIT SUMMARY

 

A – SJR 3, SB 379, SJR 15, SJR 10, and SJR 20, written testimony, Rep. Mark Hass, 2 pp

B – SJR 3 and SB 379, suggested amendments, John Lindback, 1 p

C – SJR 3, SB 379, SJR 15, SJR 10, and SJR 20, graph, Janice Thompson, 1 p

D – SJR 3, written testimony, Norman Turrill, 1 p

E – SJR 15, SJR 10, and SJR 20, written testimony, Norman Turrill, 1 p

F – SJR 20, written testimony, Andi Miller, 1 p