Are propositions necessary? Why lawmakers change what the people vote on


    Two voter-approved 2018 ballot propositions have now been amended by the Utah legislature, and some voters are frustrated. (Photo: KUTV)

    Two voter-approved 2018 ballot propositions have now been amended by the Utah legislature, and some voters are frustrated.

    “There's a lot of ideas that are out there that have to do with personal benefit rather than the people's benefit” says James O’Donnell.

    O'Donnell is 28 years old and voted in favor of the propositions. So did Brady Skinner who said, “I'm frustrated because it doesn't seem like I'm being represented.”

    Skinner watched as the medical cannabis proposition he voted for changed. He's now watching the same thing happen to Medicaid expansion

    “What are we actually voting for if they change it?” Skinner said.

    Political experts say to view propositions as a starting point to get what you want adding legislating doesn't happen here at the ballot box.

    Connor Boyack says they also put pressure on the legislature to ultimately do what the voter wants, adding, “it's a foot in the door.”

    Boyack helped write the medical cannabis compromise. He says propositions are vital for change and the pressure propositions create ensures lawmakers keep the majority of what’s voted on.

    “No, everyone is not getting precisely what they want, voters are not getting precisely what they voted for but the legislature is passing a Medicaid expansion bill that they never would have done before” Boyack says.

    Utah Decides is a group in favor of what the voters passed. They are highly critical of the changes to Medicaid expansion and have phone numbers to the Governor's office to protest the changes.


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