We believe that BIG money, whether it comes from wealthy individuals, corporations, or unions should not dominate our elections. The Citizens United decision applied to both unions and corporations because unions are corporations. Montana campaign finance law has always treated them the same. Montana has been a model for clean, fair elections. Why? Because we had a ban on corporate campaign spending and candidates had to abide by contribution limits ($160 per donor per election for a legislative candidate). Now, all of that is at risk. American Tradition Partnership is pushing an agenda, through the courts, to eliminate all of our campaign finance laws and clear the way for unlimited, secret, untraceable money. This is not a liberal vs. conservative issue. This is not a Democrat vs. Republican issue. This issue is about restoring fair elections. That is why people of all political stripes support I-166.
“A representative democracy only works when everyone truly has a voice, and when the voices of the many aren’t drowned out by the pocketbooks of a few.”
(Helena Independent Record Editorial, 2-21-12)
Our Elections Are Under Assault from Big Money
The U.S. Supreme Court's 2010 decision in Citizens United vs. FEC opened the floodgates for corporate money. In that decision, the Court ruled that corporations have the same rights as people, and that their unlimited corporate political spending equates to constitutionally protected free speech.
On June 25, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision on the case challenging the Montana Corrupt Practices Act. The Court refused to hear the case. Instead, the Court decided to summarily reverse the Montana Supreme Court, throwing out our century-old ban on corporate money in elections.
It’s Time to Fight Back
We believe that the U.S. Supreme Court grossly missed the mark. Quite simply, corporations are not people, they shouldn’t be granted the same rights as people, and they certainly shouldn’t be allowed to buy elections. And the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision on Montana's Corrupt Practices Act only means that the campaign FOR I-166 is more important than ever.
It’s time for all Montanans to stand against corruption. It is time to fan the flames of the prairie fire Montana started by standing up against the U.S. Supreme Court and its Citizens United decision. It is time to stand with Montanans in support of I-166.
Gov. Schweitzer and Lt. Gov. Bohlinger Call on You to Join the Fight
Stand with Montanans is supported by:
Stand with Montanans is about people. It's about restoring government that is of, by, and for the people.
While this is a people-powered campaign, it also takes money for us to be effective.
Your support will enable us to put organizers in communities across Montana to work with the hundreds of Montanans that have already volunteered to help with the I-166 campaign.
Please donate what you can, because every donation makes a difference.
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Can we count on your vote on Election Day? Click YES to pledge your support FOR I-166. You can also help us build support for I-166 by sharing this page with your friends.
Supporters of I-166 need to make their voices heard in communities across Montana. The whole nation is talking about Montana’s role in restoring clean elections, and it’s time for you to join the conversation by writing a letter to the editor of your local newspaper.
Writing a letter to the editor (LTE) is often the easiest way to get your message in print and the LTE pages of some publications are often the most widely read sections. A letter can raise reader awareness of our issue and respond to information contained within an article published in the newspaper.
Click on the link to submit a letter
- Billings Gazette (250 word limit)
- Bozeman Chronicle (300 word limit)
- Daily Inter Lake (300 word limit)
- Great Falls Tribune (250 word limit)
- Havre Daily News
- Helena Independent Record (200 word limit)
- Livingston Enterprise
- Miles City Star
- Missoulian (250 word limit)
- Montana Standard (400 word limit)
Drafting an LTE
- Keep it short. Check with your newspaper’s editorial department on the word limit requirements; this can often be done on-line, at the newspaper’s website. Editors may take the liberty of slicing out parts of your letter, so keeping your letter short also means that your important points won’t be left out.
- Be clear. Stick to one very clear point. In other words, what is the message you are trying to communicate?
- Personalize. Tell why you care about the issue.
- Make it local. How does this issue relate to the community?
- Be polite!
- Sign it. Include your name, address, and telephone number. And if you are mailing your letter in rather than sending it via email, don’t forget to also sign and date it. Many papers will call to confirm the author before printing the letter.
- Cite references. If you are writing in reference to a recent article, cite the headline and date in the first or second sentence of your letter.
Letters from I-166 Supporters
- 10/8 – Bozeman Chronicle – Support of I-166 step to restore balanced elections
- 9/24 – Missoulian – I-166 opponents invited to university campus debate tonight
- 9/23 – Ravalli Republic – Political ads: Reaffirm Montana's voting values
- 8/19 – Billings Gazette – I-166 guarantees vigorous debate on campaign finance
- 8/2 – Helena IR – A sensible amendment
- 7/31 – Billings Gazette – Initiative 166 links Montana’s past to present
- 7/26 – Montana Standard – Passage of I-166 a priority for Congressional delegation
- 7/17 – Missoulian – Clean up politics: Constitutional amendment a chance to save democracy from secret spending
- 7/10 – Missoulian – Citizens United: Send a message to our delegation
- 3/25 – Missoulian – Citizens United: fight back against justices' ruling