December 1, 2022

Citizen Initiative Regarding Campaign Spending Restrictions Found Valid with 67,550 Signatures

AUGUSTA — The citizen initiative petition regarding campaign spending restrictions has been found valid, Secretary of State Shenna Bellows confirmed today.

The petitions for “An Act To Prohibit Campaign Spending by Foreign Governments and Promote an Anticorruption Amendment to the United States Constitution” had been in circulation since October 27, 2021. On November 1, 2022 the Bureau of Corporations, Elections and Commissions received 11,292 petition forms with 79,660 signatures of voters who support the initiative.

Staff members at the Bureau completed the process of certifying all the petitions and found 67,550 valid signatures, while 12,110 were not valid. A minimum of 63,067 signatures from registered Maine voters was required for citizen initiatives submitted following the 2018 gubernatorial election (not less than 10% of the total votes cast in the most recent gubernatorial election), thus the petition has been deemed valid by Secretary Bellows. The text of the decision is attached.

The initiative will now go to the Legislature for consideration, per the provisions of the Maine Constitution. The Legislature can choose to enact the bill as written or to send it forward to a statewide vote in November 2023.