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    There has been more talk about the possible constitutional convention that will be on the ballot for 2010. Many blogs have been talking about the possibility with more reasons for and against the question of a constitutional convention. The people for the constitutional convention debate and use many comparisons with the U.S. Constitution. The Michigan Constitution is forty-six years old, while the U.S. Constitution is two-hundred-eighteen years old. The Michigan Constitution has been amended thirty-two times while the U.S. constitution has only had twenty-seven. Additionally, the Michigan Constitution is more of how you do this rather than a template for the balance the power of government. An example of the specification: State Police troopers and Sergeants shall, through their elected representative designated by 50% of such troopers and sergeants, have the right to bargain collectively with their employer concerning conditions of their employment, compensation, hours, working conditions, retirement, pensions, and other aspects of employment except promotions which will be determined by competitive examination and performance on the basis of merit, efficiency and fitness, and they shall have the right 30 days after commencement of such bargaining to submit any unresolved disputes to binding arbitration for the resolution thereof the same as now provided by law for Public Policy and Fire Departments.

    People against the constitutional convention derive many of their arguments from the fear of special interest groups. There is talk that special interest groups would dominate the constitutional convention to allow their language to be put into the new constitution. Some examples are: The State Lottery Bureau supports candidates that will put language to prevent gambling in Detroit, State troopers wanting to lower their threshold for bargaining collectively from 50% to 30%. This would be a serious decision for the people of Michigan to think about when making their choice at the polls as for California and their current situation.

     

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    Legislators across the United States are getting involved with the National Popular Vote movement (NPV) that would redefine the electoral system for national executive elections. NPV is a California-based non-profit organization that intends to implement a system that would allow states to enter into a compact that would allocate their electoral votes to create a majority based on the national popular vote. To take effect, enough states need to enter the compact to add up to 270 electoral votes.

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    Rep. Mike Simpson (D-MI) has proposed changes to the Michigan legislature that would result in a unicameral system, which, if passed, would make it the second in existence in the US. Simpson’s goal with the reorganization is to create a more transparent, cost-efficient, and trustworthy governing body.

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    The Michigan Policy Network is a student-led public education and research program to report and organize news and information about the political process surrounding Michigan state policy issues. It is run out of the Department of Political Science at Michigan State University, with participation by students from the College of Social Science, the College of Communication, and James Madison College. 

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    Meet your Policy Fellow: Jocelyn Cutean

    Jocelyn Cutean serves as Morality and Family policy correspondent for the Michigan Policy Network. She is a first-year student at Michigan State, majoring in Theatre and English. Jocelyn has experience working on the executive board of the Waterford Chapter Coalition for Youth. She has also piloted a grant funded city wide public service announcement entitled, "It Just Wasn't Worth It" which exposes the repercussions of driving while intoxicated. Jocelyn enjoys art of all forms, from writing to performance.