Trey Chambers
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How'd it gain voter approval? Well in case you didn't know, a very Trump-esque crazy Republican politician won the governorship in this blue state because a popular independent ran and split the Dem vote. Unlike the country at large, Maine was embarrassed by their buffoon in chief and tried to do something to prevent it from ever happening again.

Finally some real progress to fix this democracy and some old idiots in a courtroom shoot it down. Figures.

http://bangordailynews.com/2017/05/23/politics/maine-supreme...
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Shawn Fox
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I read the first part of the decision, and it is pretty clear that changing the method is unconstitutional since the Maine constitution clearly spells out exactly how elections for the Senate, House, and state governor are to be conducted. Therefore to change the method it is necessary to amend the Maine constitution.

The judges have a duty to uphold the Maine constitution, so I'm not sure what you are complaining about here.
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Trey Chambers
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sfox wrote:
I read the first part of the decision, and it is pretty clear that changing the method is unconstitutional since the Maine constitution clearly spells out exactly how elections for the Senate, House, and state governor are to be conducted. Therefore to change the method it is necessary to amend the Maine constitution.

The judges have a duty to uphold the Maine constitution, so I'm not sure what you are complaining about here.


I don't think the Maine constitution explicitly bans ranked-choice voting, so it's a matter of interpretation then.

A change in the constitution of Maine will never happen because that would require some Republican support.
 
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Patrick C.
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sfox wrote:
I read the first part of the decision, and it is pretty clear that changing the method is unconstitutional since the Maine constitution clearly spells out exactly how elections for the Senate, House, and state governor are to be conducted. Therefore to change the method it is necessary to amend the Maine constitution.

The judges have a duty to uphold the Maine constitution, so I'm not sure what you are complaining about here.


Classic example of how democratic principles are breaking down in this country and why we are seen as having a lesser democracy compared to other western countries.

The problem is that it's very likely close to impossible to change the Maine constitution.

From: https://ballotpedia.org/Amending_state_constitutions

Quote:
The Maine Constitution may be amended in two ways:

The Maine State Legislature can call for a constitutional convention.
According to Section 15 of Part III of Article IV, the legislature can, by a two-thirds concurrent vote of both branches, call a constitutional convention.
Maine has never called such a convention; however, two "constitutional commissions" were impaneled, one in 1876 and one in 1962, but neither led to significant changes.[4]
The legislature can propose a legislatively referred constitutional amendment.
According to Section 4 of Article X, if the state house and senate both approve by at least a two-thirds majority, a proposed amendment to the constitution can be placed on the statewide ballot during the November election in the year following the state legislature's approval of the proposal.
Amendments proposed in this way become part of the constitution if they are approved by a simple majority vote of the state's electorate.


As noted, the first method has never happened.

The second method requires two thirds of the legislature to get the process started. This will not happen.

Republicans in Maine know they are in the minority in terms of raw numbers. The majority of Mainers have voted liberal/moderate independent or Democrat in the past two elections and both times the Republican nut job has won because the two other candidates split the vote. Republicans will not support a process that guarantees they lose the governor's seat.

So what you're really saying is that the people of Maine are stuck with what they have and maybe their children or children's children will get electoral reform that reflects the will of the people.

You're correct, the law is clear and the court ruled legally. But their ruling is ironically anti-democratic and makes it so a minority gets to rule the state of Maine with no pragmatic step forward to make the system work. This is an outcome that only benefits one political party. If that's constitutional then the state constitution is broken.
 
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Shawn Fox
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Most constitutions in the US are very hard to change. That is by design, of course. Clearly it isn't a good idea for changing a constitution to just require a simple majority, but 2/3 of both houses seems a bit much. I'd prefer a 3/5 supermajority in the legislative branch followed by a 3/5 vote by the citizens in a special election.

That said, the US Constitution has been amended 27 times, with the 2/3 vote requirement of both houses, so it is hardly impossible. If it is too easy to change the constitution you open yourself up to all sorts of other issues which could have far worse consequences.
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Patrick C.
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sfox wrote:
Most constitutions in the US are very hard to change. That is by design, of course. Clearly it isn't a good idea for changing a constitution to just require a simple majority, but 2/3 of both houses seems a bit much. I'd prefer a 3/5 supermajority in the legislative branch followed by a 3/5 vote by the citizens in a special election.

That said, the US Constitution has been amended 27 times, with the 2/3 vote requirement of both houses, so it is hardly impossible. If it is too easy to change the constitution you open yourself up to all sorts of other issues which could have far worse consequences.


But we're not talking about the US constitution. I was not being hyperbolic with my comment about children or children's children. The amendment required to fix this situation is not going to happen.

I grew up in Maine and I know the people. It's been 51%+ liberal for many many years now. Things won't change unless either the state GOP decides to support democracy over party or liberals take two thirds the legislature. Not gonna happen in my lifetime.

I recognize that you are on solid legal ground. What I'm reacting to is your flippant view that this isn't something that should concern people and that the constitution in this case is clearly undemocratic. We have a situation where the majority of a state's population have no legal recourse against a minority that is infringing on their rights. Forget the law, that is morally not acceptable.
 
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Andre
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sfox wrote:
Most constitutions in the US are very hard to change. That is by design, of course. Clearly it isn't a good idea for changing a constitution to just require a simple majority, but 2/3 of both houses seems a bit much. I'd prefer a 3/5 supermajority in the legislative branch followed by a 3/5 vote by the citizens in a special election.

That said, the US Constitution has been amended 27 times, with the 2/3 vote requirement of both houses, so it is hardly impossible. If it is too easy to change the constitution you open yourself up to all sorts of other issues which could have far worse consequences.


Prescient words, when it comes to the nuclear option used by the Repubs to push Gorsuch through. At some point down the road, you can bet that that move will harm the Repbulicans too.
 
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Shawn Fox
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abadolato01 wrote:
sfox wrote:
Most constitutions in the US are very hard to change. That is by design, of course. Clearly it isn't a good idea for changing a constitution to just require a simple majority, but 2/3 of both houses seems a bit much. I'd prefer a 3/5 supermajority in the legislative branch followed by a 3/5 vote by the citizens in a special election.

That said, the US Constitution has been amended 27 times, with the 2/3 vote requirement of both houses, so it is hardly impossible. If it is too easy to change the constitution you open yourself up to all sorts of other issues which could have far worse consequences.


Prescient words, when it comes to the nuclear option used by the Repubs to push Gorsuch through. At some point down the road, you can bet that that move will harm the Republicans too.

The filibuster in the Senate is a really good check on laws thrashing back and forth between extremes every other election. If it took only 51% to change the law, we'd end up with so much more nonsense than we do today. It took 60 votes to create the ACA and it ought to take 60 votes to end it and/or replace it with someone else. If you can't muster 60% of the Senate than there clearly is not enough support to justify changing any laws.

[edit] And yes, I agree that pushing Gorsuch through was a mistake and the Republicans will likely regret it, and so will the Democrats. It was a dumb thing to do, SCOTUS can function just fine with 8 justices, it has many times in the past. In any case, when SCOTUS has a 5-4 decision there are clearly some major political issues there that should probably be resolved some other way than the courts.
 
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Derry Salewski
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They'll figure it out eventually. We got gay marriage and pot.

 
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scifiantihero wrote:
They'll figure it out eventually. We got gay marriage and pot.



The state constitution is working exactly as intended. What you are complaining about is that you don't like the outcome of the election. Sour grapes are not a sound reason for changing the system that has been working well for a couple centuries.
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GuidoVanHorn wrote:
scifiantihero wrote:
They'll figure it out eventually. We got gay marriage and pot.



The state constitution is working exactly as intended. What you are complaining about is that you don't like the outcome of the election. Sour grapes are not a sound reason for changing the system that has been working well for a couple centuries.


wtf are you quoting me for? I didn't complain about anything.

(Though I am fully in favor of that voting system and would have voted for it if I bothered voting but also wouldn't have cared if lepage had won anyway with that system or not. He has some good qualities.)
 
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Doesn't sound like the court decision made a ton of difference:

Quote:
The Legislature and Dunlap’s office haven’t moved to implement the law amid the uncertainty around its legality. Now the Legislature will be under pressure either to throw out the law or amend the Constitution to allow it.


According to the article, the court's decision was merely advisory, not an absolute overturning of the law.

Still, blame the voters for putting the "nutbag" in office, not the system.
 
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remorseless1 wrote:
Doesn't sound like the court decision made a ton of difference:

Quote:
The Legislature and Dunlap’s office haven’t moved to implement the law amid the uncertainty around its legality. Now the Legislature will be under pressure either to throw out the law or amend the Constitution to allow it.


According to the article, the court's decision was merely advisory, not an absolute overturning of the law.

Still, blame the voters for putting the "nutbag" in office, not the system.

yes and no, the complaint is that Maine awards the governorship to the person who gets the highest vote total. So an independant ran in the last two elections who drew a lot of votes from people who would otherwise vote Democrat. Thus even though there is more support for the Democrat than the Republican, the Republican won because he got the most votes between the three major candidates. Thus the 'ranked choice' voting method was campaigned for and passed, but it is unconstitutional in Maine.

That said, the voters who voted for the independant are to be blamed for failing to remember there are only two parties and voting for a 3rd party is just throwing away your vote. Also some of the blame falls on the independent candidate who was refused to back out of the race in 2014 (he almost won in 2010, but it was clear he was running a very distant 3rd place in 2014). So the guy who ran as in independent caused the Republican to win. At least independent who fucked over the entire state has said he won't be running in 2018. I guess he finally learned his lesson.
 
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scifiantihero wrote:
GuidoVanHorn wrote:
scifiantihero wrote:
They'll figure it out eventually. We got gay marriage and pot.



The state constitution is working exactly as intended. What you are complaining about is that you don't like the outcome of the election. Sour grapes are not a sound reason for changing the system that has been working well for a couple centuries.


wtf are you quoting me for? I didn't complain about anything.

(Though I am fully in favor of that voting system and would have voted for it if I bothered voting but also wouldn't have cared if lepage had won anyway with that system or not. He has some good qualities.)


Sorry, doing this on my phone and didn't notice I hit the quote button...I was just replying to the OP. My bad...
 
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Derry Salewski
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GuidoVanHorn wrote:
scifiantihero wrote:
GuidoVanHorn wrote:
scifiantihero wrote:
They'll figure it out eventually. We got gay marriage and pot.



The state constitution is working exactly as intended. What you are complaining about is that you don't like the outcome of the election. Sour grapes are not a sound reason for changing the system that has been working well for a couple centuries.


wtf are you quoting me for? I didn't complain about anything.

(Though I am fully in favor of that voting system and would have voted for it if I bothered voting but also wouldn't have cared if lepage had won anyway with that system or not. He has some good qualities.)


Sorry, doing this on my phone and didn't notice I hit the quote button...I was just replying to the OP. My bad...


No worries
 
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