Constitutional amendments may become harder to put on the ballot

House Majority Leader Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook, unrolled a bill on Thursday that would make it harder for lawmakers to place proposed constitutional amendments on the ballot.

The two recent Republican amendments, the marriage and photo ID amendments, provide examples of how “ugly” it can get when a simple majority of the Legislature attempts to sidestep the governor and legislate through constitutional amendments, he argued.

In the past, Bakk has fought against some proposed DFL constitutional amendments.

He gave a memorable speech on the Senate floor in opposition to the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment, passed by voters in 2008.

Bakk’s bill would require a super majority or three-fifths vote for the Legislature to place amendments on the ballot.

It would also defer placement of the amendment on the ballot to the general election following the next general election.