What's the worst ballot measure?

Kari Chisholm FacebookTwitterWebsite

ThreerocksOver at OnwardOregon, they're running a contest: What's the worst ballot measure of the year? Is it Measure 35, Measure 36 , or Measure 37?

Vote by midnight Friday. The NO campaign against the worst, most rock-bottom, most Stone Age measure will get $1100 from Onward Oregon.

Use this commments thread to make your case - which one do you think is the worst?

Oh, and an update on the Quilt Raffle: They raised $4320 to be distributed among three critical State Senate races. (Doretta Schrock of Portland won the quilt. Congrats, Doretta!)

  • Bob R. (unverified)

    I say that Measure 36 is the worst initiative because it is the most insidious. It limits rights of a minority without affecting the majority, so it's direct impact won't be seen or recognized by the majority for years to come.

    Measure 35, gernally speaking, takes away rights from everyone in the state, equally. (Unless you are currently in litigation or have just recently been a victim of malpractice, then your rights are definitively changed instantly.) It may take some doing, but horror stories are bound to emerge and get widespread coverage eventually.

    Measure 37, if the opponents are correct, will be an unmitigated disaster. State and county governments could be in a shambles in relatively short order, and the majority will likely see this in a short period of time. Therefore, although it's impacts are large, it's likelihood of being undone is high.

    • Bob R. Portland, OR
  • (Show?)

    Measure 36 is clearly the worst measure from a moral/ethical standpoint. Oregon's history isn't a glorious one with respect to civil rights, and we're just about to add another black mark to our record.

    But I believe Measure 36 is akin to the miscegenation and segregation laws rushed through in the 50s and 60s by racist holdouts who wanted to try to forestall the inevitable. In 20 years we'll have civil marriages (including gay marriage) and this will be a dark time when bigots took a misstep. I think this will ultimately fail to prevent gay and lesbian couples from marrying and receiving their constitutional rights.

    But in terms of actual harm, you can't do worse than 37, which has gotten zero attention thanks to the sun-blotting attention the presidential race has gotten. (Hmmm, that sounds like a job for BlueOregon!) I disagree slightly with Rob about the effect it will have (both M36 and 37 are leading in the polls by large margins). My guess is that in order to avoid the catastrophic effects of 37, governments will effectively forego land planning and we will quickly turn into New Jersey.

  • Rorovitz (unverified)

    First, I want to offer my thoughts to Kari on not getting the quilt. I know you must be sad about that.

    Boy, picking between 36 and 37 is so hard because they are both so incredibly bad. 36 is bigoted and mean spirited, but 37 affects so many of us.

    At the risk of seeming like the Bush campaign's version of Kerry, can we call it a tie between the two?

  • Pedro (unverified)

    Measure 36 in a landslide.

    Measure 37 will be undone in a heartbeat if it really passes and governments go broke.

    Measure 36 is intended to hurt people emotionally. No amount of litigation can correct the real damage caused by Measure 36's Nazi sponsors.

  • shampton (unverified)

    By far, 36 is the worst because it enshrines discrimination in our constitution--the very bedrock of Oregon's government by the people. What folks do not comprehend is who will be hurt by this: Oregon families. When you deny legitimacy based on status--in this case gender--you commit bigotry.

    More than this, 36 makes families illegitimate. I know that some black opponents hate the comparison; however, the case can be made that American black families have been impacted negatively by American's sanction of illegality of--first,slave marriage; and, then, interracial marriage. Decades of welfare policies also kept the "able-bodied males" outside the family structure. Do we want to create a new class of second-class citizens? Second-class families?

    Every so often, a measure will appear--sounding like righteous landowners being denied their freedoms--when it is actually yet another attempt to undo land use planning rules and procedures. This year it's 37. Oregon has done much of which we can be proud. Under Wayne Morris, Tom McCall, Mark Hatfield, Peter DeFazio (to name just a few of Oregon's statesmen), Oregon led the country in sanity and planning. Look at the mess around tacoma and seattle, and vote no on 37.

    I've worked for MDs for 2 decades. Yes, insurance is incredibly high, and it does cause some to not practice obstetrics. Capping awards, as 35 suggests, is cutting out the little guy. Why is this measure backwards? Who is charging these exorbitant fees? The large insurance companies. They say it's because of high awards. Why not limit them so they wouldn't keep making their 30 percent profit every year?

    Picture a mom. She takes care of the house and family with all that entails. If she is disabled by her medical care,she is due no damages because she does not "work". "Sorry, Mrs. Smith, but you--and your life--are of no value at all."

    Let them find another way.

    One that is close to my heart and that I think will go down because it has large Oregon money behind it is 38. SAIF.

    Why do the SAIF commercials involve actors and fake settings (i.e. "Little Store") while the pro 38 ads have real Oregon small business owners who have been put out of business by SAIF's "change of policy". They run roughshod over the small employers and injured workers to slash their committments to provide profits for a few elite.

    They make money off people's pain. Then they spend it--lavishly--on influence peddlers like Goldschmit. If SIAF is a public entity (and pays no taxes), why do they need lobbyists? They've been caught for scandals too numerous to mention here.

    Let's shake some money off that tree for our kids.

  • (Show?)

    Comparing apples to oranges -- they're awful in different ways.

    Measure 37 is goddamn awful. Remember, it doesn't only apply to land use planning laws -- it applies to "ANY regulation limiting the use of land," or somesuch, with small and unclear exceptions for public health and safety, federal laws, and porn shops.

    Farming practices, forestry practices, land use planning, are definitely included, but other things such as hiring practices, limits on billboards, discrimination laws or disability regulations that go beyond federal law, etc. could be impacted.

    Will it get overturned immediately by this legislature? The effects may take some time to germinate -- lawsuits and the such take time. It defintitely won't get completely overturned, and may not get at all overturned. I worked in the 2001 legislature when they were trying to come up with a replacement for Measure 7, which had passed and whose court future was then uncertain. The Legislature chose to do nothing and hope that it would be overturned, because the rabid property-rights folks scuttled a deal at the last minute. Don't count on this legislature for anything.

    Will it cost hundreds of millions of dollars? Yes. Will it destroy the doctrine that the government can act for the common good? Yes. Will it poison the relationship between governments and property owners? Yes.

    In short, it's a definite disaster.

    Measure 36, the other option: Is it awful? Sure. Is it sick and personal? Yes. Does it have real impacts, like preventing parents from visiting their kids in emergency rooms? Yes. But it is removing something that may not even currently exist (the courts haven't told us yet) -- the right to marriage. That's something we didn't even think existed until February, and we've done without for a long time. We'll get the right to marriage for all within 15 years. That's 15 years too many. But sooner than we could have imagined 30 years ago.

    My vote is for 37. And the news gets a definite black eye for not bringing up the profile on the true consequences of the measure. I thought after Measure 7 they would have learned, but...

  • (Show?)

    I agree with Evan - It's 37, because 36, while hateful, injurious, and bigoted, is also DOA. If it passed, it would violate the Due Process clause of the 14th Amendment, and will get housed at its first court challenge.

    In fact, 36's appearance on the ballot might have the opposite of its intended effect, resulting in a court ruling that grants some or all of those rights we married straights take for granted, to gay and lesbian couples, sooner than through the legislative/initiative process.

    37 is much more insidious, and appeals to the greed in citizens who are not willing to sacrifice for the common good. It obliterates land-use planning, hamstrings state government, and leads us on that miserable path to Grover Norquist's dream of "making government small enough to drown in the bathtub."

    It's Sizemore's takings measure again, but without Sizemore around to rally the opponents.

  • Ben (unverified)

    Measure 36 and 37 are the best. you want to know why? well its because 36 i vote for one man and one woman, while 37 you can have a lot of money from the government and also can spend it on anything you want. Plus YOU CANT HANDLE THE TRUTH.

connect with blueoregon