Five years ago the citizens of Corvallis passed an "Advisory Question" initiated by the Corvallis Area Move to Amend affiliate. The question asked "whether the City should inform elected officials that the voters in Corvallis believe the United States Constitution should be amended to limit constitutional rights to natural persons only, and to specify that campaign contributions and money spent in election campaigns is not speech protected by the First Amendment?"
It passed with a 75 percent majority. In December 2012, Mayor Julie Manning sent letters to our state and federal representatives providing these results.
In the intervening years our federal and state legislators have had before them opportunities to support an amendment with these two critical components. During the 2013 legislative session, with lobbying from Move to Amend affiliates and other groups, Oregon legislators sent a memorial (HJM 6) to Congress that urged our delegation to support an amendment with similar components.
Three members of the Oregon delegation, Reps. DeFazio, Blumenauer and Bonamici, are among the current 50 co-sponsors of HJR 48, the "We the People Amendment" written with Move to Amend and introduced by Richard Nolan of Minnesota.
The 2018 campaigns have begun. Now is the time to urge Sen. Merkley to work with Move to Amend and introduce a Senate version of HJR 48.
The national director of Move to Amend will be speaking at the library at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 5 to speak on the legal fictions of corporate constitutional rights and money as speech, and where the movement is today.