IM24 struck down by federal judge

Local News

ABERDEEN S.D. (KELO) — South Dakota’s Initiated Measure 24 was struck down by a federal judge in Aberdeen.

U.S. District Judge Charles Kornmann issued a permanent injunction striking down the measure on Thursday.

In his written decision, Judge Charles Kornamnn agrees with plaintiff’s arguments that IM24 violated First Amendment rights.

“The total ban on certain out of state contributions cannot withstand scrutiny unless the defendants can articulate a compelling reason for the ban.  As a matter of law, whatever test is applied results in a finding that IM 24 is unconstitutional,” Judge Kornamnn wrote. 

 

Thursday’s ruling is a permanent injunction which stops the planned July 1 implementation of IM24.  The State must now determine if it will appeal the decision to the U.S. Eighth circuit court of appeals.

You may remember that voters approved of IM24 in November.

The measure sought to ban individuals, political action committees and others outside of South Dakota from making contributions to ballot question committees.

Then last month, a grassroots ballot question committee announced that it’s suing South Dakota’s governor and secretary of state saying the measure is unconstitutional and could hurt future elections.

“Today’s ruling is a big win for free speech. Government cannot ban speech simply because it dislikes who is speaking. South Dakotans have the right to hear messages from all Americans,” said Institute for Free Speech Legal Director Allen Dickerson.

 

The official statement from the Attorney General’s office Thursday afternoon follows:

“We respect the decision of the Court.  We are reading the decision and are examining the avenues available to our office that best coincide with protecting the best interests of the people and the State of South Dakota.”
 

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