Undoing what the voters hath wrought?

The argus leader is reporting this AM that legislators might be looking at undoing what the voters themselves did via initiated measures:
State Sen. Garry Moore, who moves to the South Dakota House next month, said he might introduce a bill to reduce the tobacco tax increase that voters approved last month.

Moore, a Democrat from Yankton, also said some lawmakers are considering making changes to a ballot measure passed by voters that places restrictions on the use of state aircraft.
Read it here.


Anonymous said…
Doesn't Garry Moore work in his family's business that distributes cigarettes to stores? Business may be down with the tax increase?

A good question to ask is: At what point does such a bill become a conflict of interest for a cigarette dealer/legislator?

Maybe it is and maybe it isn't. I don't know.
Anonymous said…
Isn't Moore the one who intentionally failed to file a campaign finance report to see what would happen? And he thinks that should be a felony?

Then just a week ago in the Government operations and audit committee he voted to close a public meeting that was to discuss a public report of juvenile corrections. AG Long said that's a crime too.

When is Moore going to be charged with a crime? Over and over he keeps flouting the laws.
Unknown said…
Politics is this and only this: The continuous argument over who gets to do what to whom, for how long, and against what degree of dissent.

While I think that the cigarette tax and the airplane restriction were not good law, I also think the legislature is not qualified to amend such laws without demonstrating substantial harm, either actual or imminent, done or to-be-done by a measure elected into law by the voters.
Anonymous said…
Some of the states that have the initiative place restrictions on the legislature's ability to change or repeal a voter-approved initiated measure.

Regardless of whether or not the tobacco tax and the airplane bill were good law, they both passed overwhelmingly.

The legislature shouldn't mess with something that is supported by a clear majority of South Dakotans.
Anonymous said…
Just because a law passed by an overwhelming majority doesn't mean anything! The voters get a 30 second sound bite when our legislators get a chance to look at laws and hear testimony. Our great country was set up as a representative democracy for a reason. If a person doesn't like it they can collect signatures, OR they can gather support to get someone else in office. Either way, it's the people of South Dakota who vote for every law. Whether it's themselves personally, or by an elected official.
Anonymous said…
So 1:59, it doesn't mean anything when the people pass laws? The voters don't know anything anyway when they vote?

You say if the voters don't like it they can collect signatures? That's what they already did, you !@#%$@%!
lexrex said…
1:40 said, "Regardless of whether or not the tobacco tax and the airplane bill were good law, they both passed overwhelmingly."

a law that is passed is not necessarily a law that is just.

if they are bad laws -- and these two are -- they ought to be overturned -- and these two should be -- no matter what the majority think, lest we become a nation of men, not laws.
Anonymous said…

No matter what the the majority thinks. WOW...So in your way of looking at things majority does not rule? I agree with you on both laws being bad but still at the end of the day the MAJORITY RULES!
Anonymous said…
do you think for one minute that Senator Knudson has given up his zealous effort to ban video lottery?
Anonymous said…
This is incredible! What is the point of having people vote on laws if the legislature turns around and changes it?
Maybe Lexrex is hoping that the legislature will decide to reinstate the abortion ban too.
This is just one more example, out of way too many, of how screwed up some of legislators really are.
Anonymous said…
I'm guessing lexrex would just as soon see the I&R part of SD's constitution go away. It's curious. He implies that there is an inherent form of justice that is somehow greater than the consent of the goverened. I can never quite track with him on that. It seems kind of "elitist" to me.
Anonymous said…
moore is way off base with this legislation, why should the legislature try to once again prove that they are way out of touch with the rest of the voters of South Dakota? They did that last session with the passage of hb1215. By the way, will roger hunt be asked to explain his $$$ supporters to the rest of the legislature?
Anonymous said…
The initiative and referal process, on the State level, is a joke. I had to go and read the constitution to see if this is possible ( overturn a vote of the people )

Basically, legislators can do what they want to, regardless of the vote of the people. That is troubling, on the City level, it is my understanding, the laws that are initiated have to be in effect for at least one year before city councils can change or overturn them.

For us as a State to brag that the people have the power is erroneous. This post has been an education for me. It is not surprising tho, most of the restrictions on local government do not apply to the State legislators, they have routinely exempted themselves from most restrictions they think are neccessary for every other level of government.
Anonymous said…
Overturning the vote of the people is dangerous ground to tread. However, there should be a tougher set of standards in place to put taxation issues on the ballot.

That being said, the whole process is kind of scary when you have a vast majority of the people voting with emotion, rather than facts.
lexrex said…
of course there are times when the majority has to rule, but that does not make the majority right. might does not make right.

we are a nation of laws, not men. that is how a nation protects the minority from being trampled by the majority.

about majority rule, james madision said "there is nothing to check the inducement to sacrifice the weaker party or the obnoxious individual."

john adams said, "Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There was never a democracy yet that did not commit suicide."

yes, we must have majority rule, but it must always be tempered and restrained by the rule of law.
Anonymous said…
let me recap. moore smokes like a chimney. he is against the tobacco tax increase. he believes that every citizen has the right to smoke himself straight into taxpayer financed (medicaid) emphysema.

i like the idea of personal freedom. but should we all pony up and pay the bill for others' self-destruction?

cmon gary, lay off. you lost that vote big time.
Anonymous said…

I believe your point applies better to issues of "human rights" abortion, slavery etc. We are talking about a tax on an activity that is not a "human rights violation" here, not quite the same thing. Also, it is possible for the minority to "trample" on the majority, especialy in this country. I feel being forced to pay for others bad behavior is wrong. Smoking causes pre-mature babies, etc, that we all have to pay big bucks for. You do raise the question, does man serve the law, or, does the law serve man ? Both scenarios can be disasters, but I would rather suffer by my own hand than somone elses.
lexrex said…
6:35, i might agree with you more if the tax actually was dedicated to tobacco programs. not all of it is.

first, it's an excuse for the state to get and spend more money. second, it's social engineering via the tax code. that's an unconstitutional use, in principle, of the taxing power.

if smoking, specifically 2nd-hand smoke, is as bad as people claim, then we ought to talk, instead, about banning it.

i'm with you on being forced to pay for someone else's healthcare, but that's more a problem with the incremental implementation of socialized medicine.

however, if the gov't began limiting or denying medicare/medicaid to smokers, that would be an interesting debate.
Anonymous said…
I wonder what LEXREX would do if he couldn't afford to pay for his own healthcare? Or if his insurance was capped at an amount insufficient to cover his medical bills?

Many South Dakotans are hit with catastrophic medical expenses every year. If LEXREX were in this situation, would we see him being ideologically pure by refusing medicaid? Or would he accept medicaid while still complaining about others paying his way? Or would he declare bankruptcy and force his costs onto others via the backdoor route?

I hope we don't have to find out. My Christmas wish for LEXREX is that he will be more thoughtful and less judgmental.

I do agree with LEXREX that the tobacco tax is bad law. Taxes should only be passed as a necessity and not for social engineering.
lexrex said…
i've been in situations where i had insufficient or no health insurance. not for anything catastrophic, but big enough to where i'm still paying the bills years later.

for instance, we birthed a baby and had her in intensive care for several days. paid for it out of pocket.

thanks for the lecture, though.

i agree we are way beyond totally privatizing health care, but there are ways it can be improved by turning to private health insurance options.

the bottom line is, though, that people shouldn't expect the government to do everything for them. that's because the government has proven, world-wide, that is no good at health care delivery. that's why the founders never made it a constitutional function.
Anonymous said…
Governments that provide health care do it pretty well. Canada, Sweden. People are pretty healthy there. Nobody's declaring bankruptcy because of medical bills. Of course, Canadians and Swedes who want more than what's offered can pay to have more/better/elective care. They have very good systems.

Did I mention that medications cost far less in Canada too? That's why Americans go there for drugs. While our Republican-controlled government is all for price-gouging by drug companies in exchange for campaign $$, Canada's government prevents price-gouging. Canada's government even sticks up for American consumers.

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