For many the term 747 refers to a large aircraft with a bubble on top. This year it is also a state question tied to term limits. This is a Legislative Referred Constitutional Amendment (LRCA). That means that it originated within the legislature but the electorate will vote to approve or disapprove the amendment.
Here is what voters should expect to see on their ballots.
This measure amends sections 4 and 23 of Articles 6 and section 15 of Article 9 of the State Constitution. It limits the ability of voters to re-elect statewide elected officers by limiting how many years those officers can serve. It limits the number of years a person may serve in each statewide elected office. Service as Governor is limited to eight years. Service as Lieutenant Governor is limited to eight years. Service as Attorney General is limited to eight years. Service as Treasurer is limited to eight years. Service as Commissioner of Labor is limited to eight years. Service as Auditor and Inspector is limited to eight years. Service as Superintendent of Public Instruction is limited to eight years. Service as a Corporation Commissioner is limited to twelve years.
Service for less than a full term would not count against the limit on service. Years of service need not be consecutive for the limits to apply.
Officers serving when this measure is passed can complete their terms. All such serving officers, except the Governor, can also serve an additional eight or twelve years.
Shall the proposal be approved?
For the proposal
Against the proposal
A variety of polls indicate that most voters are in favor of term limits. Opponents to the amendment content that state limits for some offices is good, but some offices require a long term ramp up time before the elected official gains proficiency.
The controversy within this amendment, however, lies within its syntax. No, that’s not a tariff on transgressions, but the wording of the proposal. The following wording is at the heart of the debate: It limits the ability of voters to re-elect statewide elected officers by limiting how many years those officers can serve.
Proponents of the amendment contend that this wording may discourage voters from approving the measure for fear that they are curtailing their right to vote vice their right to vote for the same person beyond the authorized term limits.
The off-ballot debate is that State Attorney General Drew Edmonson opposed terms limits and when this measure made the ballot, he added the language that some claim to be confusing as an attempt to obfuscate the question in order to defeat it at the polls.
The amendment originated in the State House of Representatives with Jason Murphey, State District 31, as Legislative Referendum 348.
For those who choose to read the proposed amendments in advance, there should be no confusion. The amendment is about term limits. November 2nd will reveal whether the language of SQ 747 impacts voter understanding for those reading the questions for the first time at the polling place.
Read the State Election Board packet.
These are the questions before voters next month.
- State Question No. 744
- State Question No. 746
- State Question No. 747
- State Question No. 748
- State Question No. 750
- State Question No. 751
- State Question No. 752
- State Question No. 754
- State Question No. 755
- State Question No. 756
- State Question No. 757
These articles are also the launching pad for reader participation, discussion, and in some cases, even campaigning for or against a given article. Who knew truth to back away from a free and open grabble!
Let the discussion commence with all deliberate speed.