A group of securities professionals has formed an organization designed to block proposed regulations that would ban many types of political contributions.

The organization, known as the Coalition to Enact Fair Municipal Securities Practices, or Co-Fair, held a meeting in New York City yesterday at the Downtown Athletic Club to discuss regulations proposed by the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board.

The MSRB's regulations would strictly limit campaign contributions from municipal securities employees, a move that members of the coalition say violates their First Amendment rights.

The group was organized by Raymond J. McClendon, vice chairman and chief operating officer of Pryor, McClendon, Counts & Co., a minority-owned firm and Carolie R. Smith, President of Smith Mitchell Investment Group Inc., a owned firm.

Both McClendon and Smith said the coalition probably will include several regional firms, in addition to woman-owned and minority-owned municipal houses, an of which have been among the most vocal opponents of the MSRB's proposed ban as well as other efforts to bar political contributions.

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