Change Illinois! Says Contributions by Legislative Leaders and Political Parties Should Be Limited in All Elections

Jan 26, 2010, 12:00 ET from CHANGE Illinois!

CHICAGO, Jan. 26 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ – CHANGE Illinois! issued the following statement today about the introduction of legislation to set general election limits on campaign contributions by political parties and legislative leaders:

"The contribution limits bill passed and signed last year was an historic step forward, and the next step should be enactment of limits on contributions from political parties and legislative caucus committees controlled by the four legislative leaders.  The 2009 bill was a comprehensive package of contribution limits, important improvements in disclosure and stronger enforcement.  Although the legislation included limits on parties and leaders in primary election campaigns, it lacked similar limits in the general election.  The members of the CHANGE Illinois! coalition – with organizations representing more than 2 million Illinoisans – will continue to advocate limits covering all contributions in all elections.  Adding this missing ingredient to the limits law will require a bi-partisan alliance of determined legislators, and we urge legislators from both parties in both chambers of the General Assembly to work together to enact expanded limits this year."

Two limits bills have been introduced for consideration in the spring legislative session.  House Bill 5008 is sponsored by House Minority Leader Tom Cross, R-Oswego; Bill Black, R-Danville; and Elizabeth Coulson, R-Glenview.  Senate Bill 2532 is sponsored by Sen. Heather Steans, D-Chicago.

About CHANGE Illinois! (Coalition for Honest and New Government Ethics)

CHANGE Illinois! is a coalition of civic, business, labor, professional, non-profit and philanthropic organizations advocating for comprehensive political reform.  Created a year ago, the coalition identified contribution limits, combined with more frequent public reporting of contributions and strengthened oversight of campaign finance laws, as its first priority in its effort to reduce the influence of large contributors.  The coalition's work led to passage of the state's first contribution limits system, which will take effect next Jan. 1.  CHANGE Illinois! continues to build a statewide grassroots network to advocate additional reforms, including expansion of the limits law to include party and legislative leader contributions in general election cycles.  For more information, go to

Contact:  Jim Bray