A federal lawsuit filed Wednesday challenges Illinois’ campaign finance laws. It seeks to remove limits on how much individuals and groups can donate to candidates. Brian Mackey has more:
The case argues there are two sets of rules under Illinois campaign law:
PROFT: “One set of rules for the party bosses — both political parties — and another set of rules in terms of political participation for the other 13-million Illinoisans.”
Dan Proft is head of the conservative Illinois Liberty Political Action Committee, which brought the case.
Illinois law says groups like his can only give $50,000 in an election cycle. For individuals, the limit’s $5,000.
Proft says the problem is that political parties have much higher limits in the primaries and NO limits in the general election.
But David Morrison — with the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform, which favors limits — says giving private groups the same corrupting power that parties have is not the answer.
MORRISON: “For them to come in and tear down the whole system — they’re doing the dirty work for people who want to corrupt state government.”
The plaintiffs say they’re not arguing for more money in politics — just equal treatment under the law. But their legal filing makes clear they’re “ready, willing and able” to raise and spend more than current law allows.
— Brian Mackey