Voters say yes to overhaul of government ethics

Published 11-07-2018

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BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - North Dakota voters have approved a constitutional amendment to overhaul government ethics oversight.

The initiative was billed as an anti-corruption amendment. It aimed to ban foreign money from elections, restrict lobbying and create an independent ethics commission, among other things.

Supporters cited a Super Bowl trip offered to Gov. Doug Burgum by a utility company as a reason why the state needs an ethics commission. North Dakota is one of a handful of states without such a panel.

Opponents said the measure was poorly worded and there are enough safeguards in place to monitor government, including an ethics policy recently released by Burgum. They also worried it could be used as a weapon for political purposes and hurt people who don't hold office.

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