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Missouri attorney general wants to reinstate ban on PAC-to-PAC transfers

Josh Hawley takes part in a debate.
File photo | Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio
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Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley

The Missouri attorney general’s office said late Tuesday that it wants a federal appeals court to reinstate a ban on political action committees transferring money to each other during campaigns.

In May, a district judge tossed out a number of campaign-finance restrictions that were part of November’s voter-approved constitutional amendment, known as Amendment 2.

One of those restrictions was the PAC-to-PAC transfer. Attorney General Josh Hawley said in his appeal that the ban is needed to prevent campaign committees from skirting the donation limit of $2,600 per statewide, legislative or some judgeship candidate per election.

Hawley said allowing PAC-to-PAC transfers invites corruption and avoids transparency — two key reasons Missouri voters overwhelmingly approved the amendment.

Attorney Chuck Hatfield, who represented businesses challenging parts of the amendment, said his clients will oppose Hawley’s appeal.

The state will not appeal the part of the ruling that tossed out the amendment’s ban on donations by some banks and rural utility cooperatives.

Follow Jo on Twitter: @jmannies

Jo Mannies has been covering Missouri politics and government for almost four decades, much of that time as a reporter and columnist at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. She was the first woman to cover St. Louis City Hall, was the newspaper’s second woman sportswriter in its history, and spent four years in the Post-Dispatch Washington Bureau. She joined the St. Louis Beacon in 2009. She has won several local, regional and national awards, and has covered every president since Jimmy Carter. She scared fellow first-graders in the late 1950s when she showed them how close Alaska was to Russia and met Richard M. Nixon when she was in high school. She graduated from Valparaiso University in northwest Indiana, and was the daughter of a high school basketball coach. She is married and has two grown children, both lawyers. She’s a history and movie buff, cultivates a massive flower garden, and bakes banana bread regularly for her colleagues.

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