Wealthy Corporate Interests Promote Initiative 71 - Short
Published: 09-21-16

Wealthy corporate interests led by Oil & Gas have collected millions of dollars to place an initiative on the ballot - #71 - the "Initiative to End Citizen Initiatives." The Colorado Citizen Ballot Initiative was adopted in 1910 to permit the people to act against corrupt or unresponsive government by placing constitutional or statutory initiatives on the ballot. Initiative 71 seeks to make the constitutional initiative process exponentially more difficult and costly by requiring signature gatherers to obtain signatures in the amount of 2 percent of the number of registered voters in each of Colorado's 35 senate districts. Initiative 71 also calls for a "supermajority" vote for passage of a constitutional amendment, or 55 percent, giving the minority instead of the majority the power to decide what passes.

In the face of a new gilded age of "Robber Barrons," the Citizen Ballot Initiative is more important than ever - the last vestige of democracy. If Initiative 71 passes, the initiative process, already prohibitive to most, will be accessible only to the very wealthy and no longer to the people.

The political establishment that asserts the people should run statutory, not constitutional, amendments overlook the fact that the legislature can, and has, immediately overturned or greatly altered a statutory amendment. Many think that the legislature should adopt a hands-off period, e.g., 5 to 10 years after a statutory amendment passes.

Map of the network of oil and gas front groups shown is one of 7 maps from: "Behind the Curtain," by Joel Dyer, Boulder Weekly, September 17, 2015

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Election 2016

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Theme: Community Issues and Advocacy
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