No Particular Agenda

Agenda-less improvement of Colorado’s constitution is the goal of a “group of Colorado’s top civic leaders, bipartisan in its makeup,” according to the Denver Post. All they want to do is correct constitutional inconsistencies.

The difficulty of getting the revisions is so acute that many of the state’s “top civic leaders” believe that it is time again to press for a constitutional-review commission empowered to send proposed changes to the voters directly, via multi-subject initiatives that can substantially revise, rather than simply amend, the state’s governing charter. (A single-subject rule obtains for hoi-polloi signature-gatherers.)

Must be nigh impossible to get a question on the ballot the way things stand now, eh? But — wait — one of the Civic Leaders pushing for a commission, Bob Tointon, laments that people “are frustrated by the issues that get on the ballot so easily in Colorado.” And Colorado’s Future, the main organization pushing for the commission, has always argued that it’s too darn easy for the mere people to post an initiative.

Which is it? It’s too hard to post a question onto the ballot, or too easy?

Both. It’s too easy for the general public to use the initiative process, but it’s too hard for Civic Leaders to scrub voter-approved initiatives out of existence.

Opponents of this elitist brainstorm worry that the proposed Super-Commission would seek to undermine the state’s Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TABOR), a popular citizen initiative passed two decades ago limiting government spending and requiring voter approval of new taxes. The fear is legitimate.

The long-standing agenda of this cast of Civic Leaders is no secret: kill TABOR.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

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