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California: FEC okays congressmen's plan to raise soft money to fight Prop. 77

The Los Angeles Times reports: In a decision that could feed the political spending frenzy for the November election, the Federal Election Commission today ruled that members of Congress are free to spend without limit on California ballot measures.

The decision involved a proposed ballot measure that would change how boundaries of legislative districts are drawn, but could open spending floodgates on other ballot proposals on topics as diverse as teenage abortions and political spending by unions.

The commission ruled unanimously that federal law limiting contributions to congressmen to $5,000 does not apply to November's special state election because the balloting is entirely a state affair, with no federal candidates involved.

The FEC ruled directly on one of Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's key initiatives, transferring authority for legislative redistricting from lawmakers to judges. -- FEC Allows Unlimited Fundraising Against Calif. Redistricting Plan - Los Angeles Times