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Leahy proposes constitution amendment

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WASHINGTON, D.C. -

Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vermont is so concerned about big money in politics he wants to amend the constitution.

Leahy's Senate Judiciary Committee held a meeting Tuesday on the proposed amendment. It's a response to Supreme Court decisions that have eliminated constraints on the amount of money corporations and wealthy individuals can spend on campaigns.

"I believe that left unanswered these rulings will continue to erode the fundamental aspects of our Democratic process, therefore the Congress and the American people have to act," said Sen. Leahy.

"SJ Res. 19 would amend the constitution for the first time to diminish an important right that Americans have that is contained in the Bill of Rights. In fact it would cut back on the most important of these rights for free speech about who should be elected to govern ourselves," said Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa.

Given that kind of strong opposition from Republicans, political experts don't expect much to come of Sen. Leahy's proposal.

To change the Constitution, two-thirds of the Senate and the House would have to back the measure. Republicans have 45 seats in the 100-member Senate and control the House.

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