Oklahoma City, OK 73105
For Immediate Release: January 31, 2008
Sen. Kenneth Corn
Sen. Corn Files Legislation to Restore Integrity to State's
Corn has filed three measures intended to curtail the influence
of special interests in Oklahoma's electoral process and restore
integrity to the system.
said the proposals are a response to a growing concern that average
Oklahomans have been priced out of the political process and
their influence has become secondary to that of special interest
We need to give people the access they need in order to elect qualified
candidates to public office, without those people having to depend
on special interest money,” said Corn, D-Poteau. The
average person should not feel like they need to have a lot of money
to participate in their government. Approval of these bills
would send a clear message to the people that their elected officials
are working for them and not for special interests.
Joint Resolution 52, the Oklahoma Clean Elections Act of 2008,
would place caps on spending in legislative and statewide races
and would establish the Citizens Clean Elections Fund as a source
of funding for qualified candidates. The measure would
also establish a Citizens Clean Elections Commission to oversee
the process and enforce the provisions of the act. Corn
said the Fund would be comprised of unspent campaign funding,
money from fines for campaign violations and from voluntary donations.
The act would establish primary election spending limits in
the amount of $10,000 for legislative candidates, $80,000 for
any statewide elective office and $380,000 for Gubernatorial
If approved by the legislature, the plan will be sent to a vote
of the people.
The act provides us with a roadmap to get to a point where special
interests no longer have the ability to be in complete control of
the process, Corn said. If approved by the people, I believe
this bill would restore integrity to the system.
noted the act is patterned after a similar proposal adopted by
Arizona voters and that courts have ruled in favor of its constitutionality.
has also filed legislation to bring similar reforms to judicial
campaigns and elections for Corporation Commissioner. Senate
Bill 1974, the Oklahoma Judicial Campaign Contributions and Expenditures
Limitation Act, would establish voluntary limits on contributions
to and expenditures by candidates for district and associate
The bill would also establish the Oklahoma Judicial Campaign
Financing Fund as an alternative source of campaign financing. Funds
would come from fees associated with filing civil lawsuits, unspent
election funds and money ordered returned by the State Election
This gives candidates a chance to run without having to go out
and raise money from people that may later be in front of them while
they are on the bench, Corn said.
Bill 2045 would also establish voluntary limits on contributions
to and expenditures by candidates for the office of Corporation
Commissioner and Insurance Commissioner. It would establish
separate campaign financing funds for candidates for Corporation
Commission candidates and Insurance Commissioner.
Under this bill, the Insurance Commissioner and the Corporation
Commissioner don't have to go out and raise money from insurance
companies and corporations, the very people they regulate, in order
to run for those offices, Corn said. It sets out in statute
an opportunity for our Corporation Commissioner and Insurance Commissioner
to not be beholden to corporations and insurance companies in order
to compete in a campaign.
noted that Senate Bill 1974 and Senate Bill 2045 both would establish
voluntary spending and contribution limits so as not to infringe
on the constitutional rights of contributors, while providing
an alternate source of funding for candidates who choose not
to accept campaign contributions from special interest groups.
For more information contact:
Senator Corn's Office: (405) 521-5576