Monday, November 01, 2010

One Last Look and Proposals

Thanks to the good folks at Publius, I was able to get a copy of my ballot so I could do some research before heading to my polling location tomorrow and casting my vote. It may surprise you to know that if it had not been for the research, I would have known next to nothing about most of the candidates on the ballot. As for the candidates for Indiana offices, that’s a whole different story. I’m Walorskied out because the media hub for this region is South Bend, Indiana. I don’t get much media from Michigan sources.

So taking a look at what I had and eliminating all third party candidates, it looks like I will be voting almost straight party. There are three Democratic candidates that I plan on voting for, though. There are a few sections that I will defer on making a decision though such as the fire protection and road repair which are asking to raise taxes on property owners. Since I don’t own any property… well…

Proposal 1 is interesting. Under Article XII of the state constitution, every 16 years, Michigan citizens are given the choice to continue on with the current constitution or call for a convention. This year is the year and like I suspect most voters, I will be voting no on this. I’m satisfied with the current constitution and the only complaint that I have is that amendments to the constitution are too easy to approve. Hello, Proposal 2 (2004) anyone? I wouldn’t let that issue, though, to cause me to want to scrap the entire constitution.

Where I will be parting company with most of my fellow state citizens is with Proposal 2 (2010). Go ahead and read it:

PROPOSAL 10-2 A PROPOSAL TO AMEND THE STATE CONSTITUTION TO PROHIBIT CERTAIN FELONS FROM HOLDING ELECTIVE OFFICE AND SPECIFIED TYPES OF PUBLIC EMPLOYMENT POSITIONS

The proposed constitutional amendment would: Make a person ineligible for election or appointment to any state or local elective office or to hold a position in public employment in this state that is policy-making or has discretionary authority over public assets, if: " within the preceding 20 years, the person was convicted of a felony involving dishonesty, deceit, fraud, or a breach of the public trust; and " the conviction was related to the person's official capacity while holding any elective office or position of employment in local, state or federal government. Require the State Legislature to enact laws to implement the prohibition. Should this proposal be adopted?

What? Seriously, that’s what I first thought when I read this because it seems so vague to me. I mean it sounds good but this is a mess on a Blagojevichian scale. I think that this amendment to the constitution could be twisted to fit almost any type of felony conviction that an office holder may get and I’m uncomfortable with the idea that this is going to be catch-all. I have faith that a constituency would be smart enough to judge a candidate’s history. And if not, well, they get the government they deserve I guess. So I will be voting no on that one too.

So I will be getting up extra early as my polling location is in one direction and my work place is the opposite.

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