November 6, 2008
Madison - More than half of the members of the new Legislature have either voted for or publicly committed to support two important campaign reforms.
Fifty-one elected to the 99-member Assembly and 25 of the 33-member Senate are on record in favor of electioneering disclosure legislation that would require special interest groups that sponsor phony election-season "issue ads" to reveal how much they spend and who is paying for the advertising as well as follow existing state limits on campaign contributions. This not only bodes well for passage of disclosure legislation but also legislative endorsement of new disclosure rules the Government Accountability Board will consider and may approve as soon as next Tuesday.
There also is demonstrated majority support in the new Legislature for the Impartial Justice bill creating a system of publicly financed state Supreme Court elections, with 50 members of the Assembly and 22 members of the Senate already on record in favor of the reform.
Ten members of the new Legislature, including eight newly elected lawmakers, have not taken a public position on the two reforms. Of the 10, eight are in the Assembly and two are newly elected senators. Six of the 10 are Republicans and four are Democrats.