Colorado’s leading opponent of citizen control of government, Rep. Lois Court (D-Denver), is at it again. Court is seeking to amend the state’s constitution to ratchet-up the requirements for citizen-initiated petitions — something she has attempted repeatedly during her tenure in the legislature.
Rep. Court’s House Concurrent Resolution 2 would fully double the minimum signature threshold for initiative constitutional amendments, from the current 86,104 to a whopping 172,208. The amendment would also impose a new distribution requirement, mandating that a minimum number of valid signatures be gathered from each of the state’s seven congressional districts to qualify a petition.
Arkansas Circuit Court Judge Mary McGowan issued a final judgment striking down a myriad of provisions in Act 1413 as unconstitutional violations of the rights of Arkansas citizens to petition their government. Her decision, a major victory for petition rights, will likely now be appealed by the Arkansas Attorney General.
Two organizations, Judicial Watch and Allied Educational Foundation, have filed an amicus curiae brief in the federal lawsuit, Citizens in Charge v. Husted, which seeks a permanent injunction against an Ohio law that bans the recruitment of out-of-state petitioners to collect signatures for ballot initiatives.
“This Ohio law unlawfully limits the right of the people to govern themselves through the initiative process,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “Ohio’s law intrudes on a fundamental right not often emphasized by politicians – the citizens’ right to place additional checks on the power of their elected representatives.”