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Schneiderman statement on State Supreme Court decision to uphold city's campaign contribution limits

by jmaloni

Press release

Sat, May 4th 2013 11:45 am

Schneiderman: Today's decision preserves idea of "One Person, One Vote" for New York City elections

A New York City Supreme Court justice issued a decision Friday in the case of George McDonald v. NYC Campaign Finance Board and the City of New York, upholding New York City's campaign limits on contributions to candidates, including those who "opt out" of the city's public financing program.

Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman, whose office filed a friend-of-the-court brief in defense of the city's laws, issued the following statement in response:

"In the post-Citizens United world, the majority of Americans agree that unlimited election spending is bad for our democracy. New York City's common-sense campaign finance laws have helped stem the flood of money into city elections. Today's decision preserves the integrity of those laws, and of the idea that political influence should not be tied to wealth. This is a great victory for the public financing of elections and for the people of the City of New York."

In George McDonald v. NYC Campaign Finance Board and the City of New York, the plaintiffs sought a declaration that the city's rules setting campaign finance contribution limits for candidates who do not receive public funds are pre-empted by state election law. The attorney general's office filed an amicus brief arguing New York state election law does not operate in the field of public financing of elections, which was followed by the court.

The case was handled for the attorney general's office by Assistant Solicitor General Leslie Dubeck and Deputy Solicitor General Richard Dearing, under the supervision of New York Solicitor General Barbara D. Underwood.

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