Policy

Ballot Issue Breakdown: Missouri Constitutional Amendment 1

Constitutional Amendment 1 has been called the “Clean Missouri” initiative and was put on the 2018 general election ballot with the support of 231,460 registered Missouri voters.3 Its purpose is to “clean up” Missouri political corruption to make politics more fair and less influenced by money and lobbyists. The amendment would accomplish this by changing the process of legislative redistricting, limiting campaign contributions and locations, limiting employment of  and gifts to state legislators by lobbyists, and promoting transparency by making political records public records.1,2,3

Specifically, Constitutional Amendment 1 would make the following alterations to the Missouri Constitution1,2:

  1. New process of redistricting: The amendment would put in place a new process for redistricting the state legislative district boundaries during reapportionment. The process would enstate a non-partisan state demographer, selected by state auditor and the senate majority and minority leaders, who would redraw the district boundaries and submit the maps to the existing bipartisan House and Senate Commissions. The demographer’s maps would only be adjusted if 70% of the commissioners vote to change boundaries within two months of receiving the state demographer maps. The current process of redistricting has the bipartisan House and Senate Commissions draw the districts directly.
  2. Limits on campaign contributions: There will be a $100 and $500 reduction in the amount of campaign contributions a candidate for State Senator and Representative can accept, respectively. Therefore, the total amount of campaign contributions a State Senate candidate can accept from a donor would be $2500 and $2000 for a State Representative. The amendment also prohibits the state legislature from making laws that would allow for unlimited campaign contributions to candidates for the state legislature.
  3. Limits on gifts from lobbyists: State legislators and their employees cannot accept any gifts or services greater than $5 in value from lobbyists or lobbyists’ clients.
  4. Prohibitions on lobbyist employment: State legislators and their employees cannot serve as paid lobbyists for a period of two years after their legislative session.
  5. Prohibitions on candidate fundraising: Candidates and members of the state legislature cannot fundraise for campaigns on State property.
  6. Open legislative records: This amendment would require that that all legislative records and proceedings are public records and subject to state open meetings and records law, including the Missouri Sunshine Law.

The above changes to the Missouri Constitution will not have any impact on taxes. The local governmental entities expect no financial impact if passed, but the state governmental entities do estimate a potential annual operational cost increase of $189,000.2

A “yes” vote would approve all of the above amendments to the Missouri Constitution.

A “no” vote would oppose all of the above amendments to the Missouri Constitution.2

The amendment has faced some lawsuits against it, on the grounds that the changes to the constitution involve more than one subject. The Clean Missourians argue that the amendment only names the state legislature as its subject. The Missouri Supreme Court declined to hear the case on September 24th; therefore, the previous ruling from the appellate court kept the amendment on the ballot.4

For more details and information of Missouri Amendment 1, you can visit the ballotpedia article.

Sources:

  1. https://ballotpedia.org/Missouri_Amendment_1,_Lobbying,_Campaign_Finance,_and_Redistricting_Initiative_(2018)
  2. https://www.sos.mo.gov/elections/petitions/2018BallotMeasures
  3. https://www.kansascity.com/opinion/readers-opinion/guest-commentary/article218634710.html
  4. https://www.news-leader.com/story/news/politics/elections/2018/09/23/clean-missouri-amendment-1-november-ballot-what-does-do/1221594002/

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