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Free speech advocates are applauding a ruling by the BC Court of Appeal that says no to government changes to an election-campaign spending law.
A court has again ruled the B.C. law on third-party advertising before an election is unconstitutional.
The BC Supreme Court struck down the law in 2009, on a challenge by the teachers union.
The province announced fixes in May, including limits of $3,000 per electoral district or $150,000 overall, which would apply to 40 days instead of 60 before campaigning starts.
Robert Holmes, lawyer for the BC Civil Liberties Association, says the province "foolishly" tried to restrict people speaking out against it.
"In the time since the last go-round on this issue in 2009, they didn't commission any studies, they didn't assemble any evidence, they didn't get the views of chief electoral officers on whether this was necessary.
“They left the clear impression that their only goal here was to limit speech by people that disagreed with government policy."
He says the province can make more changes, scrap the law, or appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada.
NDP justice critic Leonard Krog says the Liberal government should get the hint: It's time to stop trying to limit advertising before an election campaign even begins.
"The government should lick its wounds, go home, apologize and drop it. Stop wasting precious resources fighting a battle that it has now lost literally twice."
That said, Krog says his party has not discussed whether it would try to limit ad spending in the lead up to an election.