Readers' Mailbag: The Politicians in Jefferson City are at it again…

Martha Driskel
Lake Sun Leader

In 2018 we voted for an expansion of Medicaid. The vote won by a whopping margin. However, state legislators chose to undo our mandate. Earlier this year the referendum was again on the ballot, scheduled to be voted on at the primary election. However, Governor Parsons decided the vote should be moved forward so that “plans could be made to better prepare for the expansion of Medicaid”. According to some sources the Governor thought Medicaid expansion would be rejected if the vote were moved to an election where a smaller turnout was expected. He was wrong again! We, the people of Missouri, know what we want. We want to assure that low income working families, children, and adults who live below the poverty level have health care coverage.

Even before the pandemic was in full swing in Missouri, the governor said there may not be funds to implement Medicaid Expansion. But, he did call for a special session to work on crime bills which could have been introduced and voted on during the regular session. Wonder how much that cost taxpayers.

A similar situation is occurring now. We, the citizens of Missouri, voted overwhelmingly in 2018 for the Clean Missouri initiative to reform lobbying, campaign-finance and the redistricting practices by politicians. Once again our legislators made an attempt to undo what the people voted to do. The amendment, Amendment 3, was written in such a manner that court action was taken to have it reworded. In a Lake Sun Article dated August 18, 2020, Circuit Judge Patricia Joyce said the summary “fails to even allude to the central feature of the issue”, which she defined as the “wholesale repeal of voter-approved rules for redistricting and replacing them with prior redistricting rules designed to benefit incumbent legislators.” In place of the legislators’ summary, Joyce wrote the following: “Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to: Repeal rules for drawing state legislative districts approved by voters in November 2018 and replace them with rules proposed by the legislature; Lower the campaign contribution limit for senate candidates by $100; and Lower legislative gift limit from $5 to $0, with exemptions for some lobbyists?” Even after that action was taken, the wording of the amendment as printed in the October 21, 2020 Lake Sun is still very confusing. Don’t be confused! Vote for the Clean Missouri initiative we voted for in 2018 when we determined that legislators should not receive gifts from lobbyists and that redistricting lines should be drawn by nonpartisan individuals rather than politicians who stand to gain from the current gerrymandered districts.

Vote No on Amendment 3 on November 3, 2020. If you have already voted, thank you.

-Martha Driskel, Camdenton