Hungry Horse News: Tester, Rehberg disagree on campaign reform

The race for Montana’s Senate seat between incumbent Democrat Jon Tester and Republican Rep. Denny Rehberg has already drawn significant corporate campaign spending, and much more cash will be dumped into the race in the coming months.

Last week, Tester said he supports two constitutional amendments that would allow Congress to regulate campaign spending by corporations and labor unions.

But Rehberg said he doesn’t support the amendment proposals, and even Tester admits they probably won’t pass…

But in a conference call with reporters, Tester said the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United v. the Federal Elections Commission gives corporations and unions the same rights as individuals, and that’s not right.

“This is about giving corporations better rights than a person,” he said, adding, “This is a very poor decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.”

The court found that government attempts to stymie corporate campaign-spending close to elections was a violation of their right to free speech. But the ruling also allows unfettered corporate campaign spending and without any disclosure on who is financing the campaigns.

When asked if Tester was worried about corporate influence on this year’s Senate race in Montana, he said, “You bet I am.”

“They’ve already dropped a million bucks,” he said.

Tester said things will get worse as Election Day nears.

“People will see how bad it really is,” he said.

One thing’s for certain, Tester claimed – “It will make some TV stations rich.”

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