Bipartisan proposal would give citizens veto power

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Florida residents would have the right to veto certain legislation under a proposed constitutional amendment sponsored by a Senate Republican and a House Democrat, reports the News Service of Florida. The proposals (SJR 1490 and HJR 1231) would be modeled after simlar laws in other states. The public wouldn’t have the right to veto budget items or certain emergency laws, but would be able to invalidate other legislation passed by lawmakers. The proposed amendments, which if they pass in the Legislature would still go to a vote of the public, are sponsored by Sen.Paula Dockery, R-Lakeland and Rep. Richard Steinberg, D-Miami Beach. “Like many states, Florida should afford its citizens the opportunity to reject legislation that they deem detrimental to the state,” Steinberg said in a statement.  “In a democracy, it is the citizens who should have the final word on whether to accept or reject a law.” Dockery said ordinary citizens get frustrated with “the maze that is the legislative process,” and that giving the people more power would reduce some of the power held by “wealthy special interests.”

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.