Governor Culver has signed legislation to regulate how corporations can contribute to candidates in races for the state legislature and other statewide offices. A recent U.S. Supreme Court decision lifted the nationwide ban on corporate campaign contributions which had earlier been banned. Governor Culver says he disagrees with the decision.
“I believe that the influence of corporate money in politics is too great,” Culver says. “That said, it is the law of the land in this country.” The court ruling allows corporations to run ads on the radio, T.V. and in newspapers on behalf of a candidate. The bill the governor signed into law requires public disclosure of corporate contributions to individual candidates, so when you hear an ad for a candidate, you may hear an announcer say the ad was brought to you by a company or corporation.
The governor says the new requirements will help Iowans find out who is trying to influence elections. “It’s not the sexist issue in the process, perhaps, but arguably it’s the most important,” Culver says. The bill’s sponsors say Iowa is one of the first states in the country to regulate corporate giving in the wake of the supreme court ruling and this new state law could draw a court challenge.
Under the new requirements in Iowa, candidates will be required to list their corporate donors just as they have been disclosing the names of individuals who make campaign contributions and the amount of the donation.