Colorado is leading the way concerning several policies, and may eventually be a good model for other states for how to take divisive issues and hold positive and creative dialogue among the stakeholders (constituents). At least that is what I think thus far in our journey around the state. Colorado, in general, has a diverse mix of voters (713,506 Democrats; 829,259 Republicans; 668,182 Independents), which makes Colorado a swing State– a testing ground for ideas, and a stomping ground for independent thinking.
The most talked about ballot initiative at this point, is the Colorado Marijuana Legalization Initiative, which would legalize marijuana in the state. For anyone who is a supporter of food and health freedom– this is a major step towards getting the federal government out of the drug business and the drug war. For staunch constitutionalists like myself, who do not think the federal government has any right to tell a Colorado citizen what they can or can’t do with their body– this is a nice and refreshing initiative that softly reminds them of that.
Potential citizen initiatives from Colorado include, but are not limited to:
- Colorado Handgun Concealment Amendment (Would allow concealed carry of handguns without permits)
- Colorado Property Tax Elimination Amendment (Would eliminate property taxes in the state)
- “Right to Foreclosure” Amendment (Require lenders to prove their right to foreclose on property)
- Court Term Limit Measure (Would limit the seven Supreme Court judges to two-year terms)
Driving around Colorado, it is easy to feel the attitude of change, of wanting to participate, and of absolute frustration with the economy and the political mudslinging that doesn’t solve any of our problems. Some solutions are best left to states. Colorado is one that recognizes this, and although we will not agree on all of the issues, we do agree that making these decisions here in Colorado for Coloradans, makes much more sense than having bureaucrats in Washington, DC decide what we do with our food and health freedom, right to bear arms, taxpayer money, property, and elected officials who are charged with administering law. And agreeing that Coloradans are better suited to make these decisions is a big step for states’ rights. And this notion is absolutely critical for the ability of Coloradans to have conversations with other Colorado citizens. This is where we find real solutions and not the political rhetoric that has corrupted our nation’s capital.
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I'm watching Colorado very closely because of their marijuana legalization initiative. I'm curious as to how President Obama's crackdown on medical marijuana in Colorado might play with voters in that state who will be voting in favor of marijuana legalization. Will those voters gravitate towards a third-party candidate like Gary Johnson, or paradoxically vote for marijuana legalization and Obama?
The statistics presented that make Colorado, by definition a swing state, do make a convincing argument as to why Colorado should make a plausible model state for discussion and voting rights. This being said, to me, the more defensible argument on the subject of ballot iniatives is ALSO the backing of constitutional state rights with the former points coming in as secondary factors.
Regardless, it seems like Colorado will be an interesting state to follow in the coming election and of course, the large presence of an independent party group is a promising factor.
"Colorado Handgun Concealment Amendment (Would allow concealed carry of handguns without permits)" I am in favor of this, but add it with the right to use drugs, even weed, and you are asking for major issues.
Outside of that issue, good going!
Third Way actually did a study and found that registered independents rose 10% from 2008 while registered democrats and republicans stayed pretty much the same.
I'm very interested in watching Colorado during the election. Looks like Independents will be making a big impact in November.
I think this happened in many states, though not by such a high percentage. This is great to see, but the most important thing here is that Republicans and Democrats stayed the same. This means more people who weren't voting before are seeing a new hope in the future of politics and registering, or people who are turning 18 are frustrated by old politics and registering independent for change. Either way its great to see.
I will definitely agree with you in regards to a rise in independent voters. I know I personally registered independent. Regardless of which party I agreed with more it felt a little weird to be labeled as having one specific point of view in line with either Democrats or Republicans.