from the New Mexico News Connection
Santa Fe, NM – Senate Memorial 4,sponsored by State Senator Steve Fischmann of Las Cruces, was just approved by a vote of 20-9 in the New Mexico StateSenate. Along with its companion bill, Rep. Mimi Stewart’s House Memorial 3 (approved 38-29 on January 31, 2012), the bill’s passage makes New Mexico the second state in the nation to call for the U.S. Congress to pass a constitutional amendment to reverse the U.S. Supreme Court's controversial decision in Citizens United v. the Federal Elections Commission (Hawaii was thefirst, in April, 2010).
The Citizens United ruling resulted in an explosion of unlimited, and often undisclosed, Super PAC spending, as we have seen in the current Republican presidential nominating process. The memorial is an important statement by the New Mexico State Legislature because the constitutional amendment process requires ratificationby a minimum of 38 states.
The bill’s sponsor, Senator Fischmann, emphasized the legislation’srole in defending our nation’s democracy. "Voters need to know their opinions count as much as anycorporate entity, trade, or labor association. I'm proud that NewMexico's State Senate is willing to stand for this principle,” said Fischmann. Lead advocate Viki Harrison of Common Cause New Mexico praised the legislation’spassage as “a frank statement of the State of New Mexico’s intent to correct the egregiously wrong Citizens United decision that allowed corporations to spend millions on electing politicians who will do their bidding.”
The impactof HM3/SM4 was also touted by national partners who joined in advocating for the legislation. "Today's vote by the New Mexico State Senate marks a greatvictory for American democracy," said Maram Abdelhamid, national field director for Free Speech For People, a national campaign pressing for a 28th Amendment to the US Constitution to overturn the Citizens United ruling. "The State of New Mexico is helping to lead the way for the nation in this movement to ensure that people, not corporations, govern in America. We look forward to working with other state legislatures which will follow New Mexico's example and defend our democracy."
For further information contact Viki Harrison at VHarrison@commoncause.org.