Rep. Yanez Votes Against Plan to Weaken Campaign Transparency

Senate Bill 661 allows special interests to spend more on politics
Wednesday, December 11, 2013

LANSING - State Representative Henry Yanez (D-Sterling Heights) voted against Senate Bill 661, which would change Michigan elections by allowing special interests to spend more money on politicians and campaigns while weakening financial disclosure.

“This bill is back room politics at its worst,”said Yanez. “Voters want elected officials who will talk to them and put their interests first, not politicians who are beholden to people who can afford to bankroll campaigns.”

SB 661 reduces campaign and governmental transparency for politicians and special interests at the expense of voting citizens. The bill would:

  • Double the maximum donation an individual, special interest or lobbyist can make to a candidate or political party and adjust the contribution limits for inflation every four years.
  • Alter the definition of “contribution” in order to raise annual contribution caps on items such as food and beverages.
  • Limit Michigan’s secretary of state from implementing rules that would limit the spending by political action committees (PAC), super PACs and other special interests.

“We need real reform that takes more money out of political campaigns and shines the spotlight of financial disclosure on the people and groups who use their wealth to push issues and influence elections,” said Yanez. “Senate Bill 661 just allows for more political game-playing at the voter’s expense, and that is why I voted against it.”