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Mo. Democrats to attempt to reinstate campaign contribution limits

By Marshall Griffin, KWMU

Jefferson City, MO – The battle over campaign contribution limits in Missouri will resume next year.

House Minority Floor Leader Paul LeVota (D, Independence) will sponsor a bill that would reinstate limits on campaign donations that were removed earlier this year.

LeVota says there'll be a lot of pressure from the public for the bill.

"I'm convinced that if we do not do something there'll be a petition initiative that will go directly to the people...and so if the General Assembly wants to do their job and be part of this very reasonable request, we need to be working on it," LeVota said.

A bill that passed the Republican-controlled General Assembly earlier this year removed all limits.

It also requires that any contribution to a candidate that exceeds $5000 be reported within 48 hours to the State Ethics Commission, a provision that GOP leaders say will increase transparency.

LeVota disagrees.

"It doesn't quite make sense that you (can) give more money to a candidate for State Representative than you can to a candidate for President of the United States...in my bill, the limit is $500 for a State Rep, $1000 for State Senate, (and) $2000 for statewide office," LeVota said.

LeVota's bill might have a hard time passing, as the sponsor of the new law that removed limits is Charlie Shields (R, St. Joseph), the next President Pro-Tem of the Missouri Senate.

KWMU contacted Shields office for this story, but so far he has not commented.

The 2009 legislative session begins January 7th.


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