Minnesota has two constitutional amendments on the ballot this fall which drew the attention of the not-very-conservative secretary of state. They are a law which would require ID for voting and a law which would affirm the moral, historical definition of marriage. The secretary of state changed the names of the measures to ensure that they were not saying what the legislature had originally intended:
- Original: “Photo Identification Required for Voting”
- Modified: “Changes to In-person & Absentee Voting & Voter Registration; Provisional Ballots”
- Original: “Recognition of Marriage Solely Between One Man and One Woman”
- Modified: “Limiting the Status of Marriage to Opposite Sex Couples”
For the first one, I’d wager that many people would be put off by it and not vote at all, since it sounds very bureaucratic and obtuse. For the second, while it is not as obtuse, it is definitely skewing the matter in the negative by use of the first word.
Fortunately, the state supreme court said that Mr. Ritchie had overstepped his bounds in renaming the items. Nice.