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Florida lawmakers to voters: Sit down and shut up. | Paula Dockery

It comes as no surprise that the Republican-controlled Florida Legislature has a history of opposing citizen initiatives amending the state Constitution.

A few examples: High-speed rail, fair districts, medical marijuana, land and water conservation and restoration of rights for felons. Voters approved them all, yet the Legislature ignored them, delayed them or implemented them in a way not intended by voters.

It’s also no secret that legislators keep making it harder for Floridians to get citizen initiatives on the ballot and to get them passed.

In 2003, the Florida Senate formed a committee that traveled the state taking public testimony on the constitutional amendment process. Then the committee ignored most of what Floridians said in its recommendations to the full Senate. As a result, the Legislature passed reforms that made it more difficult to get initiatives to the ballot.

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