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Tester Seeks Constitutional Change on Corporations’ Election Spending

U.S. Sen. Jon Tester is proposing a longshot constitutional amendment aimed at limiting rights of corporations to spend in elections.

The senator’s office said Tuesday that the proposal to change the U.S. Constitution is a response to last year’s voter-approved initiative. It directed Montana’s elected officials to push for such a change and declare that corporations are not people entitled to constitutional rights.

The initiative got on the ballot amid backlash to the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision that ruled a ban on corporate spending in elections was an unconstitutional free speech restriction.

Some politically-minded groups have been organizing as corporations, which can face fewer campaign restrictions than traditional campaign operations.

Constitutional amendments require two-thirds support in Congress and ratification by the states.

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