Measure T heading to court
The plaintiffs are — by many standards — local businesses; Mercer-Frasier and O&M Industries are barred from contributing to local elections due to some company shareholders residing outside Humboldt County.
Mercer-Frasier and O&M are represented by the Pacific Legal Foundation which inspired the humorously appropriate Sac Bee headline at right upon the lawfirm’s founding.
Measure T authors, the Humboldt Coalition for Community Rights, anticipated the legal challenge when they campaigned for the ordinance. They said Constitutional law expert John Bonifaz agreed then to represent them in court if needed.
Ordinance proponents released the following statement:
Voters enacted Measure T based on a legitimate concern that corporate influence in elections is undermining the integrity of our elections. It is our community’s right to protect itself from threats to our democracy. The idea that a corporation’s so called “rights” are more important than those of our community is unjust and illegitimate.
Measure T ensures that owners of corporations will operate as individuals in the political process, just like every other citizen, rather than gaining undue influence through their corporations.
We are not surprised by this action, but we are certainly disappointed that these companies have so little regard for the will of the people of Humboldt County.