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Legislature considers changes to Michigan campaign finance law


Lawmakers are moving quickly to try and pass several campaign finance bills through the legislature during the lame duck session.

One bill, currently in the house, would prohibit any public agency from requiring nonprofits to disclose their financial supporters.

Craig Mauger is with the Michigan Campaign Finance Network. He said the bill protects a wide range of nonprofits.

“Your local church to the food bank to the nonprofit organizations known as social welfare organizations that spend millions of dollars trying to influence our elections every year”

Mauger said nonprofits currently are not required to report who supports them, so it’s likely a preventative measure intended to tie the hands of the incoming administration.

Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof said the bill helps protect the privacy of people who want to donate to nonprofits.

“So folks that donate to Planned Parenthood don’t get picked on by other people.”

Officials with Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan said of Meekhof’s statement “we would very much appreciate if he didn’t invoke our mission and our members when he’s trying to sell his bad ideas to the public.”

Other republican supported bills would put a five-year statute of limitations on campaign finance violations and create a bipartisan commission to oversee campaign finance - taking those powers away from the incoming Democratic Secretary of State.