An article in Miller-McCune entitled “Ballot Initiatives: Making the Grade” reports on Citizens in Charge Foundation’s 2010 Report Card on Statewide Voter Initiative Rights.
Miller-McCune fellow Erik Hayden noticed that our report focused on the “accessibility each state provides for citizen-led ballot initiatives and referendums” and that most states received failing grades.
Hayden also compared this 50-state “nonpartisan” report card with the Ballot Initiative Strategy Center’s “progressive” 24-state report. BISC’s report “was designed to expose states that are rife with the potential for ballot-measure fraud.”
But Hayden did not ask what “the potential for ballot-measure fraud” really means. Had he done so, he would have discovered that there hasn’t been real, actual fraud BISC can point to.
BISC helps progressives launch initiatives. But the group doesn’t defend the existence (or support the spread) of initiative and referendum rights throughout the U.S.
Hayden concluded that “low grades on the report cards . . . illustrate the potential and the pitfalls of an electoral system dominated solely by citizens.”
Hmmm. So often we hear about government dominated by big money, overwhelmed by special interests, the tool of one political machine or another. When have we ever heard of government “dominated solely by citizens”?
Wait a second — isn’t that how the government is supposed to be, “We the People” and all? A government dominated by citizens would be . . . well, less dominating.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.