The state senate votes to undo something Missouri voters did 14 years ago–without asking the voters if it’s okay.

Critics of the campaign donation limits adopted by Missourians in 1994 say that law has bred a series of moves that don’t limit campaign donations and, in fact, conceal the identities of the givers.

The senate has advanced the bill removing campaign donation limits but requiring identification of donors.

Senator West Shoemeyer of Clarence tried to get the issue taken back to voters but lost on a party-line vote. Shoemeyer is a Democrat.

Sponsor Charlie Shields of St. Joseph says his bill requires that donor names be public records, regardless of the committee to which the money is given. He says something new needs to be done because the 1994 law has not kept big money out of politics. In fact, he says it’s bigger than ever and more of it is secretly circulating.

Shields says his proposal will put candidates more in charge of their own campaign finances and will lessen the use of independent committees that are not accountable to the public for the money they spend on behalf of a candidate or an issue.

Download Bob Priddy’s story (61 mp3)