The Sun seems to be all a flutter regarding emergency legislation in the General Assembly that will make it easier to collect signatures when petitioning legislation to referendum. This is a good idea, and is a reasonable change to that already existing strict standards that were held up in court. This is a good thing for conservatives given the number of times we have to try and launch a reasonable challenge to stupid legislation.
I just wish the General Assembly would go further. If the General Assembly were truly committed to citizen participation and truly committed to civic involvement, the General Assembly would allow direct initiatives, the citizenry to directly petition legislation to ballot. This would, of course, allow Maryland’s citizens to have a greater voice in its government, and serve as an effective balance to the Governor and the General Assembly down in Annapolis.
Of course, the overlords of the Democratic Party really want nothing to do with that. They would like to retain immediate and total control over the mechanisms of government in Maryland, and continue to routinely ignore the will of the public to do whatever their special interest friends ask them to do. And the Democrats would never support a direct initiative process because they also know that, given their history of mismanagement of our state’s resources, that a tax revolt would follow.
The common-sense reduction of petition restrictions is a good first step. Now, give Marylanders the right of direct initiative that so many other Americans have….