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    Who are the NERD fund donors Mr Snyder?

    Raise the curtain.

    Counterpoint to Mr. Lennox. Michigan does not need a Constitutional Convention

    By Republican Michigander, Section News
    Posted on Thu Jul 10, 2008 at 05:10:11 PM EST
    Tags: (all tags)

    In another thread posted here, Dennis Lennox makes the case that Michigan needs a Constitutional Convention. While it is an elequoent case, based on term limits and the poor judiciary takeover attempt by the democrats with their latest ballot proposal, I could not disagree more with him at this time for several reasons.

    First off, too many elitist types will hijack a constitutional convention to get rid of our top safeguards against tax increases - the Headlee Amendment and Proposal A. If the constitution is opened up, that is fair game, as is our version of the 2nd Amendment (Article 1, sec 6) and a host of other issues.

    The main pushers of this group pushing for the conbention is the current bunch at "Citizens for Michigan" lead by elitist democrats and liberal republicans. People like newspaper publisher and former UM trustee Phil Power (D), tax hike supporter Joe Schwarz and his buddy Harry Gast, Former AG Frank Kelley, Debbie Dingell, John Hertel, and Dan DeGrow. That gets my guard up if there ever was one. Most of those legislators were not exactly the epidomy of greatness while in Lansing. Anyone in Southeast Michigan who reads the Brighton Argus, Livingston County Press, and Observor and Eccentric Newspapers know the leanings of Mr. Power.

    Back in late 2006, they had a study with several recommendations to change our constitution. Their recommendations are as follows.

    1. Increase Term Limits
    I do not have a problem with that. I oppose term limits at the state level. Thanks to term limits, we had our fee increases by Rick Johnson and company back in the end of 2004 - which I think is part of the reasons we lost the state house in 2006.

    2. Make it harder for constitutional amendments to be passed here.

    This was in response to the holy grail of the elite and the Richard Florida crowd - affirmative action. That's a large part of what spun this into action. Now the left is trying to gore our ox on the ballot initative. Maybe so, but that's not a good reason to throw this out.

    3. - Eliminating the state Natural Resources and the Agriculture commissions and allowing the governor to appoint her entire cabinet
    Why should Granholm have all the power? We need checks and balances in this state.

    4. Allowing the governor to appoint members of the State Board of Education and the governing boards of the state's three largest universities, subject to advice and consent of the State Senate and a partisan balance. Currently, members of the State Board of Education, regents of the University of Michigan, trustees of Michigan State University and governors of Wayne State University are elected.  

    Again, why should Granholm have this power? While I'm not a fan of the convention nomination system and prefer old fashion primaries, I at least have SOME say with that system. I'd rather let people have the say as opposed to the elite. Maybe it's just my Jeffersonian roots. If this is going to be changed, let there be primaries.

    5. Allow the governor to appoint Supreme Court Justices to a single 10-year term with partisan balance on the high court.

    HELL NO! Dealbreaker right off the bat. Partisan balance does not exist and will not as long as there are appointments. The most powerful branch of government needs to be balanced by the people and not by politicians. While I do not agree with a convention nomination system, anything that takes away the checks and balances away from the people is damn wrong. If Stephen Reinhardt is appointed under this new proposal, I have no say whatsoever in opposing his disregard for the constitution. Under the current system, I can vote him out.

    6. - Levy an additional statewide mill to fund school district building programs that over time would reduce bonding mills at the local level

    A tax increase. No way.

    7. Eliminate super-majority voting requirements spelled out in the constitution. Banking code amendments were one example of voting requirements.

    Why? Why was there a supermajority in the first place?

    8. - Eliminate restrictions on local taxation, particularly for transportation

    No. I remember the days of the runaway millages back in the late 80's. People were taxed out of their homes. We need fiscal responsibility instead and less taxes. I don't have Phil Power's money.

    9. - Eliminate the Headlee rollback provision in Article IX, Section 31

    That is the number one goal of the leftists who want to have a constitutional convention. Eliminate the barriers so our taxes go up.

    10. Alter language regarding local elected official recalls so that the only reason for recall would be malfeasance or misfeasance

    The democrats are still mad about losing the state senate after the 1983 tax increase. Tax increases are a damn good reason for a recall. It's another check and balance the leftists and the elitists want to take away from us since they believe they know better.

    11. Allow the governor the option of a "pocket-veto"

    We do not need to give the executive any more powers. We have the veto and override. That's good enough.

    There's a reason why we do not have a lot of constitutional conventions. People are rightly suspicious when it comes to changing it. I really would not want to see the elimination of Headlee or the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, ex post facto laws, or tax safeguards in this state. They were enacted for a good reason. Government abused its power, and people moved to limit it. With a constitutional convention, all these safeguards are on the table to be removed. That is unacceptable.

    I will say this. If there will be a constitutional convention, I will run for constitutional delegate and will knock on 15,000+ doors and try and raise $50,000+ if I have to win that delegate spot in an election. Freedom will be attacked, and it must be defended with absolute vigilance.

    < Good News In Iraq (that somehow got missed by the American MSM) | Lessons from 1988: How to Stop the Expansion of Embryonic Stem Cell Research in MI >

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    Just say no (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by chetly on Thu Jul 10, 2008 at 07:54:40 PM EST
    I agree with RM here, with this addition, copied from my response to DL on his item.

    The RMGN debacle is evidence of what bad can come from convention.

    Special interests will own the delegates, particularly since the Dems are sitting on the reform Marty Knollenberg proposed in Oct. 2007 that I pointed out to him last year.  The Michigan Campaign Finance Act of 1977 forgot - understandably due to the rareness of conventions - to include delegates in reporting category defintions.  And limit definitions.

    Democrats - I'm calling Ward Connerly if there's a convention and there no law to say he can't give me one giant donation, which I'd never have to report.  And I will run if there is a Con-Con, despite my hatred for it - largely to protect MCRI, but also to protect the initiative process, Headlee, and all that the people have earned in the last 40 years in at least marginally checking government excess.

    Republicans - Stryker nightmare.

    It's not individual candidates that evade the radar - its the potential for competing blocs of "sponsored" candidates.  A Herculean battle would occur.

    You think the raw costs of a convention in terms of administrative costs, staff, space, etc. are high.  The political costs, and the subtle changes that can only ultimately favor the elite power interests since they are best positioned, are huge.

    Fight both the Con RMGN and the Con of the Con-Con.

    Chetly Zarko
    Outside Lansing & Oakland Politics

    More governor appointments? (none / 0) (#2)
    by DanaP on Thu Jul 10, 2008 at 08:15:20 PM EST
    Good grief - the Natural Resources is a good example of how awry Governor appointments can go - the power needs to go back to the people - make a sharp u-turn and help tone down the the buddy system.

    Agreed (none / 0) (#3)
    by goppartyreptile on Thu Jul 10, 2008 at 10:35:10 PM EST
    The reason why people keep wanting to tinker with the government is that it doesn't do what they want it to.

    The tax debate, and (sorry RM, I love ya but have to disagree here) the fee increases, etc that people rail about didn't happen because of term limits.  They happened because there was a legitimate debate about the size and scope of government, and one side lost.

    Changing the Constitution won't change this.  Can anyone point to anything that has happened post term limits that can be blamed exclusively on term limits?  Or is that just a scapegoat because our side lost?  Or there scapegoat when they lose?

    Government shutdown pre term limits? Check

    Tax increases pre term limits? Check

    Expansion of the Executive Departments because the legislature wasn't fulfilling it's role?  Check

    Budget deficits causing problems? Check

    "Special Interests" having too much influence? Check

    And the list goes on and on...

    We didn't run perfectly pre term limits, and we don't run that way now for a more basic reason.

    Our Constitution, and the Federal, are excellent documents that spell out specific functions and are masterfully crafted "how to" manuals on how to run things. (for the most part, at least)

    Except for one problem.  The problem that has plagued all societies since the beginning.

    What is this fault that cannot be gotten rid of, that keeps everything from working properly?

    US.  Human beings.  We fight, we argue, we don't get our way, we try and find ways around things... and no document written can stop us.

    The compromises reached, and the  checks and blances implemented, seek to address these.  And in theory they do a good job.  But someone will find some way to get around them.  

    So things muddle along, and they get worse, and rather than stand up and educate and make  arguments and win over the electorate, both sides  throw mud and decry "negative politics" and "special interests" and "partisanship" and all the other alien powers that keep us from getting our way.

    And why does all this happen?  Because politics is that important.

    And we will never change that.

    Concon (none / 0) (#4)
    by wctaxpayer on Fri Jul 11, 2008 at 12:44:27 AM EST
    You better get to Senator Bishop who has been talking up a Constitutional Convention. I walked right up to him and told him to leave the Constitution alone. Maybe some others might have greater influence. I suggest you contact him to make sure he understands.

    Rose Bogaert, Chair
    Wayne County Taxpayers Association
    Rose Bogaert, Chair Wayne County Taxpayers Association, Inc.

    Umm, point of order . . . (none / 0) (#6)
    by Kevin Rex Heine on Fri Jul 11, 2008 at 03:42:51 PM EST
    . . . don't we have a Michigan Con-Con as a mandatory ballot question coming in 2010?
    Perhaps, since it is indeed a mandatory Michigan ballot question every 16 years, we should then focus our efforts on keeping the truth of the trap out in the open.

    Just my two pence.

    And RM, would you mind sending some of that funding my way?  This sounds like a perfect excuse for my to polish and sharpen my sword (metaphorically speaking, of course).

    Warrior For The Cause,

    Kevin Rex Heine
    Community Organizer
    Michigan Fair Tax Association

    No to Constitution Convention (none / 0) (#7)
    by inform4 on Wed Jul 16, 2008 at 09:32:26 AM EST
    <strong></strong>No one is asking who will get appointed to sit on a Michigan Constitional Convention. That is where most of the mischief can be created.

    Those with a special interest to benefit their agenda.  Such as, doing away with the ability for the likes of a Ward Connorly to help in the promoting of doing away with the unequitable "Affirmative Action."  

    L. Brooks Patterson and company had this on their agenda.  They did not want to allow out-of-state funding or voices to help with doing away with the likes of the un-Constitutional "Affirmative Action."

    There are no draw bridges to pull up once a Con-Con is started and I am sure that neither the likes of you or I will have any oversight -- let alone the ability to have ourselves appointed to sit on the committee or board of a CON-CON.

    What is my greatest concern?  It is that those who will be ultimately appointed will be pro-government hacks that will expand the government bureaucracy and create more limitations on the rights of the individual.  NO, NO, NO to a Michigan Con-Con!!!

    Subject line not necessary (none / 0) (#8)
    by remjte on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 11:44:17 PM EST
    Does anyone know why the provision was put in to have the people vote ever 16 years on whether they even want a convention?

    Nothing prevents conventions from being called other times.

    To me, this is like inviting people to submit their versions of how the Constitution should read.  Calling for such a convention any other time would look like an obvious political move.  This provision allows people to hide behind the Constitution itself.

    Without research as yet to the contrary, I'd favor amending to eliminate this very provision; make people work to prove their schemes from start to finish.

    A Convention is the worst thing we could do to the Constitution.  If you don't believe me, read the section providing for the 2010 vote on it.

    A sidebar on term limits:  They get rid of the "good" ones just as easily as the "bad" ones.  Our system came with built-in term limits called "elections."  The people have no one to blame for their government but their selves.

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