Do not give the legislature the right to convene a special session

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The 32nd Governor, Butch, and Lori Otter are shown in this photo from a 2019 file.

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A small question in your vote in November could have serious, damaging consequences for the people of Idaho if approved.

Idaho legislators want voters to revise our Idaho Constitution and allow them to call back into session with ease, paving the way for full-time legislatures like California and other left-wing states.

Idaho residents must vote “no” to SJR 102.

I’m not just going to vote ‘no’ to the SJR 102. I’m going to be voting ‘Shit no!’

As a former conservative Republican governor, I know firsthand that you don’t want to mess with a good thing. For over 130 years, our part-time civil legislation has played a key role in keeping our country on track.

Idaho is the least regulated state in the country.

Our economy is booming even with historic inflation.

Decades of fiscal conservatism, limited government, the economy at the kitchen table, and a business-friendly approach have provided our country with enormous prosperity and the ability to withstand any economic downturn.

Controlling spending, cutting red tape, and restraining government – as we have done for years in Idaho – would be impossible with an overactive legislative branch.

Put simply, more legislative action means more government interference and more regulation. Less legislative activity means less government and less regulation. It’s just common sense.

The least-regulated states – such as Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, South Dakota, and North Dakota – have truly part-time legislators. They are ordinary people who come to the Capitol to represent their neighborhoods to a limited extent and to carry out people’s work in a transparent, open process.

In the most regulated states – think California, New York, Ohio, Washington, and Oregon – they see constant interference from lawmakers that only add to dysfunction and division.

Do we want Idaho to become like our western neighbors? California, Washington and Oregon?

Or maybe we want Idaho to REMAIN like our freedom-oriented, limited neighborhood countries like Wyoming, Montana, North Dakota and South Dakota?

Take a look at Utah. Just four years ago, voters amended their state’s constitution to allow the Utah state legislature to reappear at the session. Since then, the Utah State Legislature has held 15 legislative sessions.

Now the Idaho legislature is asking you to pass SJR 102 and set an even lower bar than Utah for appeal.

SJR 102 requires only 60% of Idaho’s legislature to consent to return; Utah requires two-thirds.

SJR 102 is not required to limit the duration of a special session; Utah special sessions cannot exceed 10 days.

SJR 102 has no limits to the issues that can be considered; Utah requires at least a fiscal crisis, war, natural disaster, or other emergency.

Our system here in Idaho works fine as it is. Works fine on statehood.

Idaho residents must vote ‘no’ on SJR 102 and resist the rise of the government.

Idaho residents must vote ‘no’ on SJR 102 and stand up to the waste of taxpayers’ money.

Idahonans must vote ‘no’ on SJR 102 and defend our Constitution.

CL “Butch” Otter is the former governor of Idaho.

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