CHARLESTON, W.Va. — House of Delegates Democrats failed Wednesday to pass a controversial campaign finance reform bill.  HB 4463 died when bill supporters failed to get enough votes for passage.

Apparently seeing that they were short of the votes, House leaders decided to lay the bill over for a day, but since all House bills had to be passed by Wednesday, the bill is essentially dead.

Supporters said they wanted a bill that would clean up elections by requiring greater disclosure about donors by organizations and candidates who run political ads.

“We have corporations, we have millionaires and billionaires spending money (on campaigns),” said Julie Archer of West Virginia Citizen Action Group.  “They don’t want us to know who they are (and) they are trying to influence our elections.”

However, business groups and West Virginia broadcasters opposed the bill, arguing it made campaign finance rules too complicated and that it was unconstitutional. The opponents picked up more support when West Virginians for Life called on lawmakers to vote against the bill.

Michele Crist of the West Virginia Broadcasters Association said if the bill passed it would have made the fourth time the Legislature has passed unconstitutional restrictions on campaign finance laws.

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  • Starkwood

    Finally, something positive happening under the dome. It was nothing more than a gag against political opponents. Better off dead.

  • No Sympathy

    These idiots haven't passed any meaningful legislation yet. All of them need to be replaced.

    • RogerD

      Why do you say that? Almost every time something new is passed, it makes matters worse and cost more money to boot. The state would be better off if the legislative session lasted about 3 days a year.

      • Gene

        You're both right. They haven't done anything meaningful and we would all be better if they stayed away.