Wednesday, March 09, 2011

House Debating Referendum Amendment

Opponents of marriage equality are saying put it to the people yet many of the same legislators advocating for the amendment proposed by Aisha Braveboy opposed a slots referendum because "we were sent here to decide these issues," as Kirill Reznik just pointed out. In any case, while voters can petition a law to referendum, there is no constitutional provision allowing the General Assembly to put a law up for a vote on the ballot.

Update: Del. Ben Barnes is explaining that this amendment would kill the bill and any opportunity for the people to vote on it as it would send it back to committee and die. Majority Leader Kumar Barve is now saying that he opposes putting up rights to a plebiscite but that he has no doubt that it will end up on the ballot through the normal process.

Update: Amendment fails by 63-72 and that ends debate on marriage equality for the day. Kudos to Speaker Michael Busch for running a tight debate.