Arkansas AG approves wording of ethics proposal

LITTLE ROCK (AP) - The Arkansas attorney general's office has cleared the way for supporters of new restrictions on lobbyist gifts and campaign contributions to gather signatures to qualify their measure for next year's ballot.

Attorney General Dustin McDaniel on Wednesday certified the wording of the proposed initiated act that would ban legislators and constitutional officers from accepting gifts from lobbyists. The measure would also ban corporations and unions from contributing directly to political candidates.

The proposal is backed by the group Regnat Populus, which gathered signatures last year in an attempt to get the measure on the November general election ballot. The group fell short of the 62,000 signatures of registered voters that it needed.

The proposal would also expand the period before former lawmakers can become lobbyists from one to two years.

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