Our ability to vote directly on the chief issues of our time is a vital political power, a right. I think so, and most Americans agree.
But for some reason some of those elected to “represent” us don’t.
Last year, Missouri State Rep. Mike Parson introduced legislation to restrict petitioning to place initiatives on the ballot. Parson himself admitted that there might be unconstitutional parts to his bill. Thankfully, it failed.
Now, this year, he’s back. Parson wants to double the number of petition signatures citizens must gather to place an issue on the ballot. Presently, citizens turn in more than 200,000 signatures to meet the state’s requirement. Parson wants to make that 400,000.
Why? Did voters really elect Mike Parson to block them from having a say-so in their own government?
In Nebraska, Citizens in Charge is suing to overturn unconstitutional restrictions on the initiative process. Amy Miller with the ACLU, which is handling the case, said, “It’s hard not to see the restrictions as a deliberate effort on the part of legislators to keep independent candidates and grassroots initiatives off the ballot.”
Now Nebraska State Senator Bill Avery has introduced legislation to further increase the signature requirement for a constitutional amendment by 50 percent.
It all makes me realize how important it is to have a process whereby we citizens can overrule our so-called representatives.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.