Saturday, September 19, 2015

Mercer: voters taking laws into their own hands

South Dakota's legislature is a Reichstag that's why there could be sixteen initiatives and referenda on the 2016 ballot.
State law already sets some requirements to be a circulator. But we're seeing there's no easy way to enforce that law. Requiring the circulator to be certified beforehand would provide the public with a tool of self-defense. We're heading into an era of much more direct democracy, of lawmaking by ballot. State law looks clear. Governments in South Dakota can't expend money to support candidates, or to petition for a ballot measure, or to take a position on a ballot measure. It would seem any resolution considered by a government body at a public meeting must cost taxpayers something. With 16 measures possibly on the 2016 ballot, some conflicting with each other, these aren't small matters. [excerpt, Bob Mercer]
Read Todd Epp's piece here.

You'd think a former JAG and counsel to a "great statesman" would catch this stuff:

Marion's Gardens in Fort Pierre held a contest of lights and cash prizes awarded in various categories:
*** Brightest: First Place, Jim Seward residence.
Seward the brightest bulb in the Reichstag chandelier? Probably not.

Randy Rickman decimated the Helena Independent Record; now, parent Lee Newspapers of Montana has closed its capital bureau. Pierre had maybe two journalists covering the statehouse and Rickman forces Steve Baker from the Capital Journal.

Gifted journalist, Emily Saunders, who covered Idaho politics left Boise Public Radio to work for Montana's Office of Public Instruction as communications liaison.

Tony Mangan left radio journalism in Pierre to work for South Dakota's Department of 'Public Safety' as its public voice.

Ben Dunsmoor covered Pierre during the legislative session: he left KELO teevee for public relations.

That pretty much leaves Bob Mercer to write the gloomy news from South Dakota's capital city.

If the legislature had the balls to divert its attention from ending women's civil rights, building more prisons and trying to look at naked juveniles it would have more time to head off ballot clutter.

By throwing out video lootery and adopting my cannabis template the state could make at least two ballot measures meaningless.

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