It’s called the citizen’s initiative because it is supposed to come from the citizens, not national well-funded or even state well-funded groups who buy their way onto our ballot.
Over the years we’ve tried to take the money out of the process, including making it illegal to pay people to gather signatures. The Maine Supreme Court overturned that law in 1988. So we were back at the legislature yesterday, with a new attempt to improve the integrity of the process.
Dave Trahan, executive director of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine, led the way in support of a bill he drafted that was sponsored by Representative Stan Short. Dave presented the Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee with excellent testimony, including a lot of specifics about the most recent bear initiative by the Humane Society of the United States.