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Corporations are not people. In the coming months I will be standing up for that belief. One way in which I will be doing this is by signing the petition for the “Stand with Montanans: Corporations Aren’t People – Ban Corporate Campaign Spending” initiative.

In January 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that corporations have the same rights as people and that their unlimited corporate political spending equates to constitutionally protected free speech, thus prohibiting restrictions on their political expenditures.

Montana’s history teaches us of the implications of allowing corporations to use the company checkbook to fund political campaigns. We do not want to return to the days of the copper barons when big money controlled our state Legislature and even bought a U.S. Senate seat. For 100 years, the Corrupt Practices Act has served Montana well. It has helped ensure that our government and our elections are run by the people of Montana and not left in the hands of wealthy corporations, many of which come from out of our state. It looks like it’s time to stand up and stop the copper kings of today.

Please join me in signing the petition and supporting the Stand with Montana’s campaign. You can learn more at: standwithmontanans.org.

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Let Montana lead the nation. Our government is still of the people, by the people, and for the people. Let’s put this on the ballot so that on Nov. 6, Montana can direct Congress and the state Legislature to overturn the U.S. Supreme Court decision and keep these big corporations out of our elections.

Julia Sherburne Starrett, Florence

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