Constitutional Amendments for November 6, 2018

 Print This Post Print This Post

ON the ballot on Tuesday, November 6 will be four statewide proposed armaments to the Alabama Constitution. Below you will find the language that will be on the ballot when you vote. We have also offed a brief commentary on each of these proposed amendments:

BALLOT STATEMENT FOR STATEWIDE AMENDMENT #1

(1) The text of the statewide ballot measure, including sponsors, cosponsors, and the text of the question that will appear on the statewide ballot:

Proposed by: Act 2018-389 (Senate Bill 181 of the 2018 Regular Legislative Session)
Bill Sponsor: Senator Dial
Cosponsors: None

“Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, providing for certain religious rights and liberties; authorizing the display of the Ten Commandments on state property and property owned or administrated by a public school or public body; and prohibiting the expenditure of public funds in defense of the constitutionality of this amendment.

Proposed by Act 2018-389.

This description shall be followed by the following language:

Yes ( ) No ( )”

While this proposed amendment will allow the display of the Ten Commandments and other documents the difference in this proposed amendment ant others that have been proposed will prohibit the expenditure of public dollars to defend any challenge in court of the amendment. To defend the legality/constitutionality of this amendment the defense must be funded by private dollars.

BALLOT STATEMENT FOR STATEWIDE AMENDMENT #2

(1) The text of the statewide ballot measure, including sponsors, cosponsors, and the text of the question that will appear on the statewide ballot:

Proposed by: Act 2017-188 (House Bill 98 of the 2017 Regular Legislative Session)
Bill Sponsor: Representative Fridy
Cosponsors: None

“Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended; to declare and otherwise affirm that it is the public policy of this state to recognize and support the sanctity of unborn life and the rights of unborn children, most importantly the right to life in all manners and measures appropriate and lawful; and to provide that the constitution of this state does not protect the right to abortion or require the funding of abortion.

Proposed by Act 2017-188.

This description shall be followed by the following language:

Yes ( ) No ( )”

While this amendment might appeal to the prolife population there is an unintended consequence in this amendment. If a couple participates in the IVF (invitro fertilization process) the couple could end up being charged with first degree murder. If multiple eggs are fertilized and only one is implanted and the remaining fertilized eggs are destroyed, then since the fertilized eggs were destroyed conceivably the eggs destroyed constitute murder. If those fertilized eggs must be maintained who pays for the maintenance of the eggs? What happens when the parents die? If they die intestate does the Probate Judge decide who then becomes custodian of the fertilized eggs?

While this language might appeal to those who are pro life there is an unintended consequence in this amendment. If a couple is involved in the IVF process they are in jeopardy.

BALLOT STATEMENT FOR STATEWIDE AMENDMENT #3

(1) The text of the statewide ballot measure, including sponsors, cosponsors, and the text of the question that will appear on the statewide ballot:

Proposed by: Act 2018-132 (Senate Bill 194 of the 2018 Regular Legislative Session)
Bill Sponsor: Senator Greg Reed
Cosponsors: Senators Waggoner and Allen

“Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, relating to the Board of Trustees of the University of Alabama, to specify that the congressional districts from which members are appointed continue to reflect those as constituted on January 1, 2018, to remove the State Superintendent of Education from membership, and to delete the requirement that members vacate office at the annual meeting of the board following their seventieth birthday.

Proposed by Act 2018-132.

This description shall be followed by the following language:

Yes ( ) No ( )”

This amendment is a protective issue. There is concern that with the 2020 census that the state of Alabama will lose a Congressional seat. This proposed amendment will lock in the Members of the University of Alabama Board of Trustees based on the current number of Congressional Districts.

BALLOT STATEMENT FOR STATEWIDE AMENDMENT #4

(1) The text of the statewide ballot measure, including sponsors, cosponsors, and the text of the question that will appear on the statewide ballot:

Proposed by: Act 2018-276 (Senate Bill 15 of the 2018 Regular Legislative Session)
Bill Sponsor: Senator Glover
Cosponsors: None

“Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, to provide that, if a vacancy in either the House of Representatives or the Senate occurs on or after October 1 of the third year of a quadrennium, the seat would remain vacant until a successor is elected at the next succeeding general election.

Proposed by Act 2018-276.

This description shall be followed by the following language:

Yes ( ) No ( )”

This amendment is designed to eliminate unneeded special election for the Legislature if a vacancy occurs late in the term of a Legislator. This is a cost saving move that will have minimal impact on the process of the Legislature. This amendment should be adopted.

The views and opinions contained in this report do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the clients of Public Strategies, LLC.

 

The Alabama House will reconvene at Noon on Tuesday, January 8, 2019 for its Organizational Session

 The Alabama Senate will reconvene at Noon on Tuesday, January 8, 2019 for its Organizational Session