Two Republican state representatives say voters in Mississippi should have a say whether health insurance should be required in the magnolia state. The two will propose a ballot initiative, which is in direct response to the federal health care reform law. Representatives Alex Monsour of Vicksburg and Steven Palazzo of Biloxi filed a proposed initiative Tuesday with the Secretary of State’s office.
Petitioners gathered more than enough signatures to put a voter ID initiative on Mississippi’s November 2011 ballot that will include candidates for governor and other offices, the state’s top elections official said Monday. Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann said his office had determined 131,678 signatures of registered voters were collected. That’s significantly more than the minimum 89,285 needed. Republican organizers, led by Sen. Joey Fillingane of Petal, spent about a year collecting signatures and submitted them in February.
The push for personhood amendments — designed to protect life from its biological beginning — continues with record-breaking support. Most petition drives involve signatures submitted in Colorado for a ballot position, but Keith Mason of Personhood USA was on hand in Mississippi. “The requirement to get on the ballot is 89,000 certified signatures, and out of the 130,000 that we turned in, 105,000 were certified,” he reports.
The Voter Identification petition, or, Initiative Measure #27, seeking to amend the State Constitution to require voters to submit a government issued photo identification before being allowed to vote, has been stamped received by Mississippi Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann Thursday, February 11, 2010.
Mississippi’s Voter ID petition drive is moving forward and has acquired the numbers needed to continue the process to place the initiative on the state wide ballot. The petition drive had to capture 90,000 signatures divided between the five old congressional districts. According to sources close to the effort, over 22,000 signatures have been compiled in the First, Second, and Third Congressional Districts. The Fourth District has just over 20,000 signatures and the old Fifth District has over 21,000.
Alabama and Mississippi are among 11 states getting a grade of “F” on the first annual report card by the Citizens in Charge Foundation, a Virginia-based group that supports voters’ ability to change the law through statewide ballot initiatives and referendums. Out of a possible 11 points, for example, Alabama got only one on the grounds that some cities allow residents the right to local “initiative and referendum.”
An anti-abortion group that wants life defined in Mississippi as beginning at fertilization said it intends file a federal lawsuit today to protect a yearlong effort to get the measure on a statewide ballot.
Most residents of Mississippi probably don’t think twice about how a proposed law makes its way to the ballot during statewide elections. With the voter identification initiative #27 set to go on the ballots in 2011, Dave Clarke of Clarke, Bradley and Baker explained the measure and how the process works to get initiatives onto the ballot during the Greenville Kiwanis Club luncheon on Tuesday.
A 30-day petition drive by the Meridian Tea Party to collect signatures needed to get a Voter ID Initiative on ballot next year has exceeded expectations, according to organizers. “It’s been a good process; hopefully, we’ll be able to turn in over a thousand signatures,” said Paul Tarver, co-founder of the local organization.