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The Initiative: Citizen Law-Making
Foyalty 261

The Initiative: Citizen Law-Making (Hardback)

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Voter disillusionment with state legislatures during the Populist Movement of the 1890s led South Dakota voters in 1898 to amend their state constitution to authorize voters to employ the Initiative to place proposed constitutional amendments and statutes on the referendum ballot and the Protest Referendum to repeal statutes enacted by the state legislature. Each process is a petition involving the collection of a specified number of signatures of voters to place a proposition on the ballot or to place a proposed repeal of a statute on the ballot. The Initiative has been a controversial device since 1898 and numerous arguments have been developed both in support of and in opposition to it. These arguments are analyzed and conclusions are drawn relative to their validity. Particular attention is paid to the impact of the Initiative on state and local governing bodies and their individual members. Scholars, students, researchers, and policy makers involved with state and local government and electoral systems will find this volume of particular value.

JOSEPH F. ZIMMERMAN is Professor of Political Science in the Graduate School of Public Affairs of the State University of New York at Albany. He is the author of numerous articles and books, including The New England Town Meeting: Democracy in Action (Praeger, 1999), The Recall: Tribunal of the People (Praeger, 1997), and Interstate Relations (Praeger, 1996).

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