Brnovich called it a distinction without a difference, saying it operates as a complete ban on the ability of city employees to give not only money but anything of value, directly or indirectly, to any candidate for city office.
And that, he said, is improper.
“City employees undoubtedly have an interest in making political contributions,” Brnovich said. “An outright ban on all political contributions, no matter how small, constitutes a substantial burden on public employees’ First Amendment rights.”
Brnovich said his views are buttressed by the fact that there is no evidence that such a restriction is necessary to do things like promote public confidence in government or ensure governmental integrity.
And even if those were problems, the attorney general said there are other ways to serve government interests without stepping on the rights of employees.
He pointed out, for example, that state law already prohibits city employees from using the authority of…