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Judge upholds Iowa rule requiring corporations to get board approval for campaign spending


DES MOINES, Iowa — A judge is upholding an Iowa law that requires the boards of corporations and labor unions to approve any money they spend to influence elections.

U.S. District Judge Robert Pratt ruled Monday the board-approval requirement does not violate the right to free association or illegally restrain speech.

He says the requirement ensures the integrity of the political system by letting the public know the spending is backed by the group and not "just an individual with access" to its bank account.

Iowa lawmakers passed the requirement after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2010 that corporations and unions can spend money directly from their own treasuries to influence campaigns.

Pratt's ruling dismisses a longrunning lawsuit filed by the Iowa Right to Life Committee, which argued the requirement was unconstitutional.

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