M. Stephen Turner, Leonard Collins, Christine Dorchak: Let Florida voters decide fate of dog racing – Florida Politics (blog)
The constitutional revision process is unique to Florida.
No other state has such a body, one that meets every 20 years and takes recommendations for amendments directly to the voters, without requiring approval of the governor or the Legislature, and without automatic review by the courts.
The Florida Constitution is a statement of our aspirations as Floridians. Unlike the U.S. Constitution which grants powers to the federal government, the Florida Constitution is a statement of limitations on government.
Because of this difference, the Florida Constitution is much more detailed than its federal counterpart. Some have unfavorably compared the Florida Constitution to the U.S. Constitution in terms of its respective length (the Florida Constitution is three times longer than the U.S. Constitution).
But this critique overlooks the fundamental distinction between the two. Clearly, if we want to limit the power of state government, we must specifically enumerate these limitations in our state charter.
Recently, a former Justice of the Florida Supreme Court, Major Harding, suggested that the Florida Constitution is overburdened with sections relating to government policy and ordinary regulation. He argues that to the extent that a proposed amendment is not necessary for government to operate, or does not protect a fundamental right, or cannot be enacted by the Legislature, then such a proposal for amendment should be rejected.
Under this analysis, as many as 11 of the 12 current proposals would have to be set aside and sent back for possible legislative consideration. This defies the entire CRC process and takes away the rights of voters to decide on important issues.
There is no doubt that there are