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Same Old Trick

Post #31, Bob McKnight's Subscription Commentary

"No Problem, we'll just run it as a C.A."

In my early days in the Legislature, I often heard the lobbyists grouse around the Rotunda about their failed legislation. I recall on one occasion, one of the most experienced and effective mumbled, "No problem. I'll just run it as a C.A."

He was saying that if he could not pass the legislation requested by his client in the Legislature, he could always try to pass in by an amendment in the Constitution. Textbook lawmaking say that rule making and maybe law making should be the primary vehicle for enacting changes.. The Constitution is intended to be permanent, seldom requiring the extraordinary vote to put the issue on the ballot. Several years ago, mischief makers amended the Constitution to affect animal treatment.. The language was partially meant as a joke, and remains an embarrassment for the State today.

Fast forward to today. The unimpressive Constitutional Revision Commission (largely made up of big campaign contributors to Governor Scott), were easily swayed by the same lobbyists described above. They have loaded our ballot with 13 inane and irresponsible proposed Amendments. Some are lumped together with different subjects, which should never have passed muster by the Courts. I am not going to take the 13 proposals up individually, as most don't even deserve the time. Some property owners may be concerned about their proposed tax exemptions, which is somewhat understood. But otherwise, I recommend my readers vote no on all of them because we should not be amending the Constitution in this fashion.

The Legislature will be in Session in a couple of weeks--which gives us plenty of time to make our proposals to them. The Constitution is just fine, thank you very much.

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