VOTE 2022 + Poll: A breakdown of Issue 2 in Arkansas

Published: Oct. 17, 2022 at 7:27 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 18, 2022 at 4:27 PM CDT
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - With election season just around the corner, Region 8 News will begin to explain what issues you could see on the ballot.

One of those issues Arkansans will see in the November election will be Issue 2.

A vote for Issue 2 means support for increasing the percentage of votes required to pass constitutional amendments and citizen-proposed state laws from a majority to 60%.

The vote for Issue 2 is a fight between the Arkansas State Legislature and Public Policy Panel.

Both sides said they are trying to protect Arkansans, but ultimately, the decision is up to the voters.

Members of the Arkansas Legislature, such as Republican Representative of the 40th District David Ray, are pushing for Issue 2 to pass. He said it’s currently too easy to propose a change to the state’s constitution.

“It’s the bedrock foundation of our state. We shouldn’t amend it in a willy-nilly fashion where we add four or five or six amendments to it every six years,” Ray said.

Arkansas Public Policy Panel Executive Director Bill Kopsky said the change is sudden and believes the current ruling, 50% or a simple majority, should stand.

“In Arkansas, a democracy has always been ruled with a simple majority which has always meant 50%, now suddenly, Rep. Ray wants to raise that to 60% because he doesn’t like the issues Arkansas voters said they support,” he said.

When both sides were asked how this protected Arkansans, their answers differed.

Ray explained he supported Issue 2 to deter big money from messing with Arkansans.

“I’m just trying to provide additional protection for Arkansas’ constitution so that it’s not as susceptible to big money, out-of-state interest that want to come in and essentially buy an amendment to our constitution, which is the arrangement we have now,” Ray said.

Kopsky said this was a move by politicians to push their will instead of the people.

“Issue 2 basically is some politicians and big special interests saying they want to rewrite the rules so that they have the power to do what they want instead of what the people want,” Kopsky said.

Both sides encouraged voters to research topics like Issue 2 before heading to the ballot box.

You can visit the Vote 2022 page to get more information on this year’s candidates and issues at the polls.

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