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Florida moving to tighten petition rules

This could help efforts in the Sunshine State to stop the current petition drive for a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage. The wingers of Florida4Marriage already failed to raise the necessary signatures to continue the amendment process, so the fact the the GOP lawmakers are going to make things even more difficult for them to gain momentum is an extra blessing, even though that wasn’t the specific intent. (365gay):

Florida Republicans are preparing a bill to limit the way names are collected on petitions to amend the state constitution.

Last year lawmakers passed legislation shortening the length of time citizen groups have to collect names – a move that a group trying to get a proposed amendment that would ban gay marriage put before voters claim was responsible for them coming up short this year.

Now GOP politicians want to tighten the law, forcing hired guns that collect the signatures to swear they registered are voters in the state and wear pins saying they are being paid to collect the names.

The aim is to prevent fraud in the gathering of signatures. The new legislation on its own has nothing to do with the marriage issue. It’s more about political survival – a bid to head off a liberal group’s effort to block lawmakers from redrawing political districts.

The proposed amendment that Florida4Marriage was pushing would be extremely restrictive, banning civil unions, domestic partnerships and contracts between same-sex individuals that approximate those that convey with marriage.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding