Colorado Supreme Court Chief Justice Mary Mullarkey to pick commissioner to rewrite Colorado Constitution?
So much for constitutionally mandated separation of powers and “checks and balances…”
A recent editorial on the Colorado Legislature’s “Long Term Fiscal Stability Commission” (a 16-member group dominated by big-government advocates thinly disguising yet another attempt to eviscerate – or outright eliminate – the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights, TABOR) brought to light a troubling attempt to bypass the rules which normally apply to amending the Colorado Constitution:
Along a party line vote, the commission invented a third way to amend the Colorado constitution.
Assuming the 2010 General Assembly passes the legislation, Colorado voters would decide a measure to create a 19-member commission to address fiscal policy, defined as expenditures and revenue only, in the state constitution and submit one or more proposals to voters in 2012. The commission would have direct access to the ballot without signatures, and any measures it may propose would be exempt from the single-subject rule.
Commission members will be appointed, with six from the Governor, three from the senate president, three from the senate minority leader, three from the speaker of the house, three from the house minority leader, and one from the chief justice of the state supreme court.
This idea is troubling for several reasons. First, the makeup of the commission includes an appointment from the chief justice of the state supreme court, which seems to cross the line of separation of powers. Two, the legislature hand picks commissioners who are unelected and unaccountable to voters. Third, the commission has the authority to bypass citizens and single-subject requirements.
It’s bad enough that the Mullarkey Majority on the Colorado Supreme Court frequently takes the opportunity to re-write the Colorado Constitution by creatively re-defining terms (such as “General Assembly“, “tax policy change“, or “fees” vs. “taxes”) in ruling on cases brought to the court for a decision – but allowing the Chief Justice to hand-pick someone to re-write the Constitution directly? That IS “troubling.”
The Colorado Supreme Court Chief Justice already wields enormous power (not even counting several recent power grabs and usurpations of legislative authority), both directly (from the bench) and indirectly through powers of appointment – most prominently, appointing FOUR (of a total eleven) members of the Reapportionment Commission which will re-draw Colorado legislative district boundaries following the 2010 Census.
The current Chief Justice (Mary Mullarkey) has repeatedly shown that she cannot be trusted to fairly and impartially wield such power. Her opinions and rulings have arrogantly substituted a personal agenda instead of following the Constitution; she has been actively and unrelentingly hostile to TABOR (the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights – Article X, Section 20 of the Colorado Constitution that she is sworn to uphold).
“TABOR… is the only line of defense between working families’ wallets and a massive increase in government spending… Allowing citizens to vote on how much government they want and how much they are willing to pay for it” is the core of TABOR, without which those in government – such as the unjust justices of the Mullarkey Majority – would recognize NO LIMITS on their power and authority to take whatever they want, in pursuit of whatever goals they want; with YOUR money.
Freedom isn’t Free – Defend YOUR Constitution, and exercise YOUR right to vote “NO” on retaining the four unjust justices of the Mullarkey Majority (Justices Michael Bender, Alex Martinez, Nancy Rice, and Chief Justice Mary Mullarkey) who need YOUR approval to continue taking away your constitutional rights: your right to vote on tax increases, your right to defend your homes and business from seizure by rapacious governments, and your right to enjoy the benefits of the rule of law, not rule by activist, agenda-driven “justices.” Support Clear The Bench Colorado with your comments (Sound Off!), your contributions, and your “NO” vote on retaining these unjust justices in 2010!