Volume 4, Number 28 - October 7, 2004
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Ballot process challenged
Tom Throop and three other Wyoming citizens petitioned the Wyoming Supreme Court Tuesday challenging the ballot language of four proposed constitutional amendments that Wyoming voters will consider in the general election on Nov. 2.
Throop, a Lander resident, and his fellow petitioners, Christian Heap of Kemmerer, Tim Wells of Rock Springs and Kyle McCroskey of Riverton, claim the failure to place the actual language of the proposed constitutional amendments on the ballot is contrary to state law.
Only brief summaries of the proposed amendments will appear on the ballot.
“The Wyoming State Constitution, however, requires the full text of any proposed constitutional amendment to appear on the ballot itself,” Throop noted.
“Under the constitution, the Legislature has a duty to present the language of proposed amendments to the voters,” he added.
“The reason for this law is so voters can determine for themselves what they think the proposed changes will do and whether they support or oppose them,” Throop said.
The state has advertised the actual language of the amendments in the newspapers around the state and will post the changes in polling stations.
“But what about absentee voters, our Wyoming members of the armed services or college students, who live far away and don’t get to see the advertisements and who do not go to the polling stations in Wyoming to vote?” Throop asked.
“As a long-time advocate of good government, this seems to be an obvious problem with a readily available solution. The state should trust voters to read on their ballot the actual language of any proposed amendments to our trusted constitution,” he said.
Throop and the other plaintiffs asked the court to immediately order Secretary of State Joe Meyer to cause the ballots to reflect the actual language of the proposed amendments.
The petitioners are represented by Laramie attorney Tim Newcomb.
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