RELEASE: House committee reloads initiative petition legislation with ‘ballot candy’

Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Politicians scheme to trick voters into giving away rights, end 100 years of majority rule

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – The Missouri House Election Committee today moved forward with adding so-called ballot candy to SJR74, a shameful move meant to trick voters. The resolution would dismantle democracy as Missourians have known it for over 100 years. SJR74, as currently constructed, would end majority rule in Missouri, potentially requiring more than 70% of a statewide vote for any constitutional amendment to pass.

“Everyone knows why this resolution is loaded with ballot candy,” said Liz McCune, Executive Director of Progress Missouri. “Missourians hate these plans to end majority rule. Politicians are trying every trick they can to distract and confuse us from their real agenda. These changes will result in making politicians even more powerful while making it harder for Missourians to have a say and go around a legislature that often ignores them.”

Today, the House committee added items to the Senate passed version of SJR74, including a requirement that those who vote in Missouri elections be U.S. citizens and a clause that foreign governments cannot fund ballot initiative efforts. BOTH OF THESE ITEMS ARE ALREADY REQUIRED UNDER MISSOURI LAW.

“The ballot candy is designed to hide the true impact of the measure and gain support from voters who don’t know that several items in the ballot summary are already required by law,” said Marilyn McLeod, President of the League of Women Voters of Missouri. “The initiative process is an important part of democracy in Missouri and the suggested changes would squelch the voice of the people, overturning the sacred principle of ‘one person, one vote’.”

Since the beginning of the year, thousands of Missourians voiced their opposition to attacks on the initiative petition process, many pointing out that the process already in place gives Missourians the power to make direct decisions about policies that impact them and their families.

Missourians are urged to let their legislator know they oppose these efforts to trick Missourians into giving their rights away and making it harder for votes to count.