The nation’s highest court has upheld this state’s campaign contribution disclosure laws, brushing aside an appeal from Human Life of Washington.
Washington Secretary of State Sam Reed said he was pleased.
“We in Washington have long valued transparency in our elections process, and we welcome the Supreme Court and the federal judiciary upholding our sensible requirements that allow us to know who is participating in our campaigns,” Reed said in an emailed statement. ” This does not violate the First Amendment rights of individuals or groups, but rather provides us all with useful information as we make important ballot-box decisions. ”
“The voters of Washington approved open public records and full campaign finance disclosure almost 40 years ago, as Initiative 276, and `sunshine’ in government and in our elections is part of our culture in this state,” Reed added.
The first dispatch from Associated Press:
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court has rejected an appeal challenging campaign disclosure laws in Washington state.
The court on Tuesday let stand without comment a federal appeals court ruling that upheld the state’s disclosure requirements. Human Life of Washington challenged the requirements as a violation of the First Amendment. The group didn’t want to reveal its donors in a 2008 campaign opposing an assisted suicide ballot measure.
The San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the disclosure requirements “have become an important part of our First Amendment tradition.”
The case is Human Life of Washington v. Brumsickle, 10-686.