Summer Sale! Get unlimited digital access for 13 weeks for $13.
Readers Respond
News Opinion Readers Respond

Referendums remain constitutionally sound

It's amazing that the Gov. Martin O'Malley would make such an asinine assessment of a referendum process that was approved by the people both at its inception and during the 2012 election cycle ("A referendum on referendums," Nov. 13).

First, the online process created by Del. Neil Parrott, MDPetitions.com, is in no way different from that of the physical forms presented by citizens at community meetings, events and grocery markets across the state. The online petition process serves only as a conduit for those who believe the legislature has gone too far. It allows them to print a physical form that is then signed and returned either to the state Board of Elections or to the group promoting the ballot referendum.

Garnering more than 55,000 signatures is no small feat, especially when the authorization of these signatures in Maryland remains one of the strictest in the nation. Legislators, who seem to have forgotten that they work for the people, not the other way around, should remember that the constitutional amendment allowing petition referendums was approved by a majority of Maryland voters in 1914 and that any change in the process would have to be approved by the voters as well.

The amendment has proven itself as a valuable tool for governmental reform for nearly a century, and it remains the only viable option citizens have to ensure an effective system of checks and balances in the absence of a strong minority party. The will of the people should always trump that of partisan politics.

Hassan Giordano, Baltimore

The writer is chairman of the political action committee Independent Movement PAC.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • Why let voters get in the way with democracy?

    It's really a shame! The Democratic Party led by Gov. Martin O'Malley would make it harder for referendums to make it on a ballot ("A referendum on referendums?" Nov. 13).

  • Pope Francis catches up with God on abortion

    Regarding your story "Pope to allow priests to absolve abortion in holy year," Sept. 3), I'm so glad the Pope is on board, because God has been forgiving abortions since the first one occurred.

  • The victims of violence

    The victims of violence

    Regarding your recent front-page reports on the victims of violence — one on the Freddie Gray case, the other of the 45 murder victims in July — as mind-boggling as these stories were, my first thought was that "black lives matter," "all lives matter" no matter how they were killed or by whom.

  • Let teachers teach, not test

    Let teachers teach, not test

    In the recent commentary by Betty Weller and Elizabeth Ysla Leight ("Less testing, more learning," Sept. 1), the authors observe that "students spend an excessive amount of time taking and preparing for standardized tests." In fact, they relate in Carroll County "tests were scheduled for all but...

  • Have we grown numb to the deaths of our fellow citizens?

    Have we grown numb to the deaths of our fellow citizens?

    The Sun cover story that profiled the 45 people murdered in July enabled readers to see that behind the statistics were real people, most of whom had families and friends who loved them, and some of whom died simply because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time ("45 murders in 31 days...

  • Marilyn Mosby is just another grandstanding politician

    Marilyn Mosby is just another grandstanding politician

    I have several points of disagreement with letter writer Kweisi Mfume's recent assessment of Baltimore City State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby ("Mfume: Sun is too quick to judge Mosby," Aug. 28).

Comments
Loading
75°