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Centre, Mifflin, Perry, Juniata, Union Counties, PA November 2, 2010 Election
Smart Voter

Constitutional Reform

By Jon Eich

Candidate for State Senator; District 34

This information is provided by the candidate
Pennsylvania has the most expensive legislature in the nation. Yet voters are dissatified with its performance. Even in the face of this disapproval, the legislature resists reform. That makes a Constitutional Convention necessary.
Unfortunately, the legislature is unable or unwilling to take the lead in considering changes to its own operation or modernizing the overall operation of state government. That makes a Constitutional Convention necessary. I have already signed the petition calling for one.

In fact, I support restoring the mechanism the founders wrote into Pennsylvania's 1776 Constitution for making amendments: every seven years, a board composed of people from across the state would be elected and meet for up to a year to recommend amendments or call a convention. That guarantees a periodic, independent review that is absent under the current system.

A Constitution Convention should be charged with:

  • Reviewing the size of the legislature.
  • Setting term limits for legislators.
  • Creating a Redistricting Commission that draws compact legislative disticts without regard for the political registration of the residents.
  • Establishing procedures for dealing with budget impasses.
  • Addressing lame duck sessions.
  • Considering the merit selection of judges.
  • Completing the unified operation of the judiciary.
  • Providing for citizen initiated ballot questions.
  • Providing for tax reform.
  • Considering a compensation commission to set legislative, judicial, and executive salaries and benefits.
  • Reviewing how Lieutenant Governors are selected and how vacancies in that office are filled.
  • Updating ballot access requirements.
  • Strengthening campaign financing rules.
  • Simplifying restrictions on absentee balloting.
  • Making other reforms to the operation of the legislature and state government.

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