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Thursday, September 27, 2007


The Missouri Ethics Commission on Sept. 19 voted to rescind its earlier vote on how to implement a recent state Supreme Court ruling reinstating campaign contribution limits. The action came after the Missouri Republican Party sued commissioners for violating the state open meeting’s law in reaching its original decision.

At a Sept. 11 meeting, the commission discussed the issue in closed session and then in an open session and with no public debate approved a motion to implement the court’s ruling. The Republican Party contends the commission’s action was a public policy matter that could not be discussed in private under state law, a view shared by many news organizations.

The commission will hold an open meeting on Oct. 4 to take public testimony on the matter and again vote on implementation. In a supplementary ruling to its opinion striking down legislation that repealed state campaign contribution limits, the court directed the commission to order candidates who accepted donations above the limits during the six-month period the caps were lifted to return the money unless individual candidates can prove doing so would result in a hardship.

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