Even repressive regimes can have laws granting citizens certain political rights. What matters is the extent to which citizens are actually allowed to use those rights â€” you know, in real life.
Michigan taxpayers are trying to recall ten state legislators, from both parties, who voted to raise taxes $1.6 billion dollars. Michiganâ€™s constitution provides citizens with a process for recall.
Thereâ€™s also an effort by a number of elected and appointed government officials to plainly thwart the constitutional rights of these citizens.
State Representative Tim Melton says, â€œThe fight is to keep them off the ballot.â€ His goal isnâ€™t to win an election, but to prevent the voters from ever getting the opportunity to decide.
State House Democrats plan to use â€œblockersâ€ against the recall petitioners. One Democrat, unnamed in media reports, says the plan is to â€œshadowâ€ or â€œfollowâ€ those who circulate the petition and â€œhave a debate with each potential signer in an attempt to convince them not to sign the recalls.â€
In other words, a campaign of stalking and voter intimidation.
Those opposing the recalls also plan to tie the effort up in court. One Kent County judge recently felt the need to declare his disdain for the right to recall before ruling that â€œThis [petition] language quite honestly is as clear as any that has come before us.â€
You see, elections commissions in Wayne, Macomb and Muskegon counties have all rejected the exact same wording.
Citizens there have had to hire lawyers and appeal.
This is Common Sense. Iâ€™m Paul Jacob.