Anyways, in an article that read in the South Bend Tribune, a group called Reform Michigan Now is making a drive to put on a ballot a rather lengthy proposal. The proposal is aimed at streamlining the government.
As printed in the article:
- The state Senate would drop from 38 members to 28. The House would drop from 110 members to 82. An “independent nonpartisan commission” would handle redistricting.
- Pay would be reduced for lawmakers, judges, the governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state and attorney general. Benefits would be cut or capped at the level allowed for civil service employees.
- The Michigan Supreme Court would be reduced from seven justices to five. The two shortest-tenured justices who would lose their seats under terms of the proposal, Stephen Markman and Robert Young Jr., were both nominated by Republicans.
- The Michigan Court of Appeals would downsize from 28 members to 21. Ten judges would be added at the circuit court level.
- Lawmakers would have to wait at least two years to become lobbyists after leaving office.
- Lawmakers would have to disclose information about their finances.
The GOP stands to lose more out of this proposal than the democrats but I like it. I really like it. It’s not a perfect proposal. I’m suspicious of anything being called “non-partisan” especially if it’s the one drawing district lines. I’m not too fond of downsizing the Court of Appeals but I do like it when it concerns the Supreme Court. I think that 5 is a good number for the court although I would not go any lower than that.
I’m against the lobbyist portion of the proposal. To me it’s a First Amendment violation.
I’m most excited about kicking some lawmakers out of the Capitol and slashing away at some of their benefits. If I remember correctly, they get a pension and health care for life after only six years. Bringing them in line with the other civil servants who have serve over 30 years for just a portion of what they get is just fine with me.