Our authoritarian Tea-Publican overlords have been working overtime this week to deprive the citizens of Arizona of their constitutional rights to citizens initiative and referendum. This state belongs to the “Kochtopus” and the corporatocracy of Plutocrats who lord over us, dontcha know.
Tea-Publicans want to gut the Voter Protection Act, a citizens initiative the citizens of this state felt compelled to enact to protect us from our lawless Tea-Publican legislature. House approves bill for more control over voter-enacted laws:
The House passed a measure that would give lawmakers more power to change and overturn voter-enacted laws.
Republican Rep. J.D. Mesnard of Chandler (this tool again) sponsored the measure that would let lawmakers alter voter-approved initiatives and referendums if the Legislature passes the changes by a higher percentage than voters passed the original proposal.
The measure modifies the Arizona Voter Protection Act and would need to be approved by voters in November if it clears the Legislature.
The proposal would only affect future legislation and is one of several similar proposals moving through the Legislature.
Critics denounce the measure as an attempt to limit the public’s voice.
House Concurrent Resolution 2043 (.pdf) passed on a 32-25 vote Thursday. It now moves to the Senate.
An editorial in the Sierra Vista Herald notes that “apparently state lawmakers believe the only obstacle to good government are the people who elected them to serve.” A thirst for power (subscription required).
Here is how the House voted:
Earlier in the week, authoritarian Tea-Publicans in the House voted to take away your constitutional right to citizens initiatives and referendums by joining an unconstitutional interstate compact Confederacy to prevent any voter initiatives for gun safety laws by surrendering state sovereignty and allowing citizens of other states to exercise a veto power over your constitutional right. Legislative Briefs:
Without debate the state House voted to try to restrict the rights of Arizonans to propose new restrictions on the sale and transfer of firearms.
HB 2524 (.pdf) requires the state to try to enter into binding agreements with other states, each one agreeing not to allow any additional laws. That would cover not only what the Legislature could enact but would effectively override the constitutional right of initiative, at least on the subject of weapons.
The 35-24 vote sends the measure to the Senate.
An editorial in Flagstaff’s Arizona Daily Sun notes, Gun controls deserve full citizen vote:
It is somewhat suprising, given Rep. Bob Thorpe’s record as a fervent advocate for Arizona sovereignty over federal lands, health care policy and immigration. This bill, however, would cede that sovereignty to a multi-state entity empowered to enforce federal gun laws that themselves could change.
More serious than loss of sovereignty, however, is the threat such a compact poses to the direct democracy enshrined in the Arizona constitution.
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More serious than loss of sovereignty, however, is the threat such a compact poses to the direct democracy enshrined in the Arizona constitution. We don’t necessarily agree with all the recent initiatives brought forward on issues as diverse as medical marijuana, casino gaming, campaign finance and higher taxes for schools. And lately many of those campaigns have been run or influenced by wealthy backers who have hidden their financial ties from voters.
But the framers of the Arizona constitution and those in many other states saw citizen petitions as part of the checks and balances needed for a healthy democracy. They recognized that election to the Legislature by district can sometimes result in narrow causes pushed by groups with special access to the Legislature winning out over statewide concerns. A citizen initiative taps that broader base, and it can be amended by the Legislature only in a way that furthers its purpose and only by a three-fourths vote.
The Thorpe measure abrogates that process — and without consulting the voters via a constitutional amendment. As a result, it will likely undergo its own constitutional legal challenge if adopted.
Here is how the House voted:
The voters of this state have a moral imperative and civic duty to vote against these measures and to remove from office every legislator who voted for these bills for violating their oath of office. If you vote for these legislators you are voluntarily surrendering your constitutional rights and surrendering your freedom to live under subjugation.
Get off your knees! Stand up and fight back against these authoritarian Tea-Publicans!