Free Speech For People has filed an amicus brief before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in support of Montana’s defense of its campaign contribution limits for state elections. Our brief argues that large campaign contributions give wealthy donors more influence than ordinary voters, and Montana has an interest in protecting voter equality from this danger.

Montana voters passed these contribution limits as part of a 1994 ballot initiative. The challengers claim that the limits are too low and violate their right to freedom of speech.

Free Speech For People’s amicus brief argues that large contributions give wealthy funders more of a vote than ordinary citizens, and that this threatens the principle of voter equality established in the Supreme Court’s voting rights cases. Our brief argues that Montana has a compelling state interest in protecting voter equality by imposing contribution limits that prevent individual funders from contributing so much that ordinary Montanans’ right to vote is abridged.

We were joined in this brief by the Honorable James Nelson (a retired Justice of the Montana Supreme Court), the Montana-based American Independent Business Alliance, and the American Sustainable Business Council.

Download our amicus brief here [PDF]