CO Campaign Laws Chill Speech

Diana Hsieh, who fought the anti-abortion “Personhood” ballot measures in 2008 and 2010, had to endure the onerous reporting requirements of Colorado’s campaign laws — just so she could spend a few hundred dollars (in 2008) and nearly $3,000 (in 2010).

As she testified at a May 3 meeting held by the Secretary of State, the campaign laws nearly made her give up her cause, and they reduced the amount of speaking she could do. Not only did conforming to the laws eat away at her valuable activism time, but they discouraged her from raising more money to reach more voters with her message. Moreover, the laws put citizen activists at risk of getting sued by opportunistic attack groups. (Note: I worked with Diana on these projects, and in 2010 we each earned money from donors for our work.)

I testified at the same meeting that the campaign laws have prevented me from pursuing certain activist ideas, thereby violating my right of free speech.

See also:

Why Colorado’s Campaign Laws Constitute Censorship, a video with more testimony from the May 3 meeting

SOS Looks to Mitigate Burden of Campaign Censorship Laws, my written comments

Diana’s written comments