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By Miriam Raftery

August 12, 2014 (San Francisco)--The California SupremeCourt has ruled that California voters can’t vote on a ballot initiative asking their views on limiting campaign spending—at least, not in November.

Prop 49 was set to be on the November ballot. It would have asked voters if they think Congress should overturn the Supreme Court’s ruling in the controversial Citizens United decision, which allowed virtually unlimited corporate spending on campaigns.  A Constitutional amendment has been proposed to restrict corporate money in elections.

But the majority on California’s Supreme Court sided with the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, agreeing on a 5 to 1 vote that it needs more time to consider whether the advisory-only initiative is legal.

Derek Cressman with the Money Out, Voters In campaign said, “It’s pretty chilling when the judicial branch cancels an election where the people are likely to vote against the judicial branch.”

But Justice Goodwin Liu wrote that if the Legislature wants to know what people think on an issue, it should commission a pollster instead of putting an advisory measure on the ballot.  Ballot propositions should be limited only to language that would actually change the law.

However Chief Justice Tani Canti-Sakauye dissented. She objects to the state’s high court depriving voters of the right to voice their views now, when the issue is being hotly debated.

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