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Oklahoma State Senate
Communications Division
State Capitol
Oklahoma City, OK 73105

For Immediate Release: November 10, 2009

Sen. Jim Wilson
Sen. Jim Wilson

Sen. Wilson Files ‘Truth in Campaigning’ Legislation

Although the 2010 elections are still a year away, State Sen. Jim Wilson wants to make sure the campaigns take the high road. He’s filed legislation that would make it illegal for anyone to intentionally lie or spread misinformation in a political campaign.

“Every year it seems like the lies and the mudslinging just gets worse and worse. It would be laughable if it wasn’t such a serious issue—these lies can and do impact the outcomes of our electoral process, and yet nothing is ever done to hold those responsible accountable,” said Wilson, D-Tahlequah.  “It’s got to stop.”

Senate Bill 1255 would make it a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up of $5,000 or one year in jail for intentionally participating in the dissemination of political advertising or campaign materials that the person knows to be false. The penalty would specifically apply to materials that provide false information regarding the personal or political character of a candidate, voting records or the effect of legislation authored.

“People should seek elected office or passage of an issue based on the facts and merits. Instead, we see individuals and organizations use lies to frighten, anger and manipulate voters. The process is tainted,” Wilson said. “Oklahomans deserve better.”

Wilson said similar legislation has been filed in the past, but has never made it through both chambers.

“You can’t get on TV and lie about what a product does, or what a competing product does or doesn’t do, but when it comes to politics, the most outrageous slander goes unchecked, Wilson said. “I hope when the 2010 session begins, my fellow members will help clean up the process by passing SB 1255.”

For more information contact:
Senator Wilson: 405-521-5574

Inon: Horizontal Blue Band

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