(COMMON DREAMS) Lauren McCauley, November 4, 2015 — Maine voters on Tuesday reaffirmed their desire to keep the influence of big money out of politics by passing the Clean Elections Initiative, a move that campaigners say serves as a “flare to a nation” desperate to “reclaim control of our democracy” in the wake of the Citizens United Supreme Court decision.
According to the Bangor Daily News, the Initiative passed 55 to 45 percent. The measure strengthens the state’s Clean Election Act by bolstering financing for the state’s Clean Election Fund, increasing penalties for violations of campaign finance disclosure rules, amending ad disclosure rules to require the disclosure of a campaign’s top three funders, and allowing a candidate to apply for additional funds.
When Maine voters passed the Clean Election Act in 1996, it marked the first statewide system for the public financing of elections in the nation.”
As is their custom, Mainers are leading the way for the nation,” said Miles Rapoport, president of the national pro-democracy group Common Cause in a statement celebrating Tuesday’s vote. “Their strong vote today for accountable elections further underscores their determination to make our democracy work for everyone; it reflects the sentiments of millions of Americans who are determined to rein in the power of big money and refocus our politics on issues important to citizens.”