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HJR 11: Urging the United States Congress and the President of the United States to work to amend the Constitution of the United States to prohibit corporations, outside groups, unions, and other organizations from making unlimited independent expenditures supporting or opposing candidates for public office.

00                       HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 11                                                                     
01 Urging the United States Congress and the President of the United States to work to                                     
02 amend the Constitution of the United States to prohibit corporations, outside groups,                                   
03 unions, and other organizations from making unlimited independent expenditures                                          
04 supporting or opposing candidates for public office.                                                                    
05 BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA:                                                               
06       WHEREAS a vast majority of Americans recognize that the influence of unlimited                                  
07 contributions by corporations, outside groups, unions, and other organizations harms the                                
08 ability of average citizens to have a voice in their own government; and                                                
09       WHEREAS the decision of the United States Supreme Court in Citizens United v.                                   
10 Federal Election Commission, 558 U.S. 310 (2010), allows corporations, outside groups,                                  
11 unions, and other organizations to make unlimited independent expenditures supporting or                                
12 opposing a candidate for public office; and                                                                             
13       WHEREAS states and the United States Congress were permitted to ban unlimited                                 
14 independent expenditures from corporations, unions, and other organizations until the ruling                            
15 of the United States Supreme Court in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission; and                               
01       WHEREAS much of the hundreds of millions of dollars being spent by corporations,                                
02 unions, and other organizations since the ruling of the United States Supreme Court in                                  
03 Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission is going to negative advertisements, which                               
04 often misinform voters rather than lead to a productive discussion of the state's and nation's                          
05 most important issues; and                                                                                              
06       WHEREAS roughly 80 percent of the independent expenditures authorized by                                        
07 Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission are made to purchase negative                                            
08 advertisements, which alienate voters; and                                                                              
09       WHEREAS, unless the United States Supreme Court reverses its ruling, the only way                               
10 to reverse the harmful effects of the Citizens United ruling is to amend the Constitution of the                        
11 United States; and                                                                                                      
12       WHEREAS a record-breaking $43,000,000 dollars in independent expenditures was                                   
13 made in the 2014 United States Senate race in this state, making it the sixth most expensive                            
14 United States Senate race since the United States Supreme Court made its ruling in Citizens                             
15 United;                                                                                                                 
16       BE IT RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature urges the United States                                        
17 Congress and the President of the United States to work across party lines to propose a                                 
18 constitutional amendment to prohibit corporations, outside groups, unions, and other                                    
19 organizations from making unlimited independent expenditures supporting or opposing                                     
20 candidates for public office and to send the amendment to the states for approval.                                      
21       COPIES of this resolution shall be sent to the Honorable Barack Obama, President of                             
22 the United States; the Honorable Lisa Murkowski and the Honorable Dan Sullivan, U.S.                                    
23 Senators, and the Honorable Don Young, U.S. Representative, members of the Alaska                                       
24 delegation in Congress; all other members of the 114th United States Congress; and the                                  
25 presiding officers of the legislatures of each of the other 49 states.