Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

In Oregon, it is now a crime to be both an innocent bystander and a leading participant in democracy.

Or it soon will be, if Oregon’s Governor Kulongoski signs a bill that has just emerged from the state legislature. The bilious bill would fine leaders of a citizen initiative campaign $10,000 if anybody working for the campaign is found to have committed fraud in the process of gathering signatures.

The alleged wrongdoing is not being complicit in fraud but “failing to prevent” it. Do you see the problem? No screening process, no matter how careful, can eliminate the free will of campaign workers. A chief petitioner on a campaign cannot be everywhere watching everyone as more than a hundred thousand people sign the petition. Under this law, an opponent could bankrupt the  leader of a ballot measure by joining the effort and committing fraudulent acts.

This and other less zany — but still burdensome — provisions are designed, presumably, to “cut down on fraud and abuse.” Tough job for a bill that is itself inherently fraudulent and abusive.

It’s real purpose, of course, is to hamper and obstruct the petition process.

The only Senate Democrat to vote no to the bill, state Senator Vicki Walker, notes that some activists will be more reluctant now to be lead a ballot initiative if they can be socked with a huge fine for a violation committed by somebody else.

Well, that’s obvious. It’s also, sadly, the point.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

By: Redactor


  1. Hannibal Barca says:

    I wonder if the legislators who drafted and ratified this have contemplated that this law could be turned against themselves.

    I sincerely hope that if this legislation is not nullified, that there are dedicated citizens within that state that would actively submarine the legislators when they are up for re-election.

    Bankrupt and destroy all of them.

  2. HENRY says:

    Are you talking about Iran? Surely no Democrat or Republican inj the U.S. would make so blatent effort to curb citizen activity. This is suppression of free speach. I would believe an Oregon court woould uphold the law, if passed. Then some poor devil would have to appeal to the federal courts. After this session, there may be a question as to whether the Supreme Court will decide to limit free speach.

  3. THIS BILL IS “AN ACT OF TREASON” and is proof that there is a “CONSPIRACY AGAINST RIGHTS” that is protected by the Constitution of the United States of America.

    Westlaw s 241 is the law that those who drafted the bill and those who voted for it are in violation of and are now subject to 10 years in prison and a fine.
    According to Westlaw s241.


  4. Carly says:

    Life is short, and this article saved vlaaulbe time on this Earth.

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