Will Republicans Push State Constitution Amendments This Summer?

RALEIGH – It’s often instructive to pay attention to what the political Left is crying the loudest about when it comes to Republican majorities on Jones Street, because it can be a good indicator of what those majorities are doing right as far as conservatives are concerned.

Enter NC Policy Watch, a progressive outgrowth of the N.C. Justice Center that certainly qualifies as a bunch of ‘high brow’ Leftists perpetually whining about the evil acts of Republicans.

So what are they worried about, that conservatives should be looking forward to?

“The word from insiders at the General Assembly is that GOP House and Senate leaders have instead all but finalized plans to use the latter days of their endangered supermajorities to advance as many as three cynical and/or highly destructive state constitutional amendments during the session. The amendments would: 1) permanently cap the state income tax rate, 2) impose a new photo identification requirement to vote, and 3) establish a state constitutional right to hunt and fish. The apparent plan is to pass all three and place them on the November general election ballot.”

While NCPW is predictably categorizing the rumored amendments as efforts to wreak havoc on the Old North State before they lose their majority. Wishful thinking, we know, but when those on the Left squirm it usually means good things for limited government.

First, capping the state income tax by constitutional amendment will bring certainty to a tax environment, and more importantly etch in stone a respect for taxpayers that can’t be easily undone by election results.

Second, while the Left hyperventilates about ‘disenfranchising’ voters by requiring a voter I.D., the general public understand this to be a completely reasonable requirement that protects the integrity of the electoral process and is consistent with similar requirements for myriad necessary tasks and responsibilities that adults must perform.

No one in their right mind believes requiring an I.D. to cast a vote is an unfair burden to place on voters. If in the exceptional cases that arise, programs are already drawn up to provide identification at no cost. The Left merely uses this as fantasy issue as if they were fighting for legitimate civil rights causes.

The third amendment suggested is a bit of a question mark. This has been floated in recent years, and those rights should certainly be protected, but to what degree are they actually threatened?

A better proposal would be to float a concealed carry amendment that further spelled out North Carolinians inalienable right to bear arms and placed handcuffs on the state government when it comes to curtailing that right. You’d really see the Left lose it if that were included.

Overall, though, if Republican leadership can shepherd these amendments, further cementing the Republican reforms and resetting the foundation of limited government that is spelled out in our state constitution, it will be a very good thing.

If you want to subject yourself to the typical Leftist reaction to such sensible policy proposals, click here.

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