ELECTION 2016: Montana’s Four Ballot Initiatives

Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

The ballots are in the mail in Montana (I received mine Saturday) and today I want to tell you my thoughts/endorsements about the four ballot initiatives Montanans will be voting on in this election:

  • CI-116 (Crime Victims’ Rights)
  • I-177 (Trapping)
  • I-181 (Medical Research)
  • I-182 (Medical Marijuana)

If you need more information, at the end of this column I will provide information on where you can find it.

Vote Yes – Ballot Issue CI-116:

Subject: Ensure that crime victims’ rights and interests are respected and protected by law.

After reading the first sentence of the ballot language, “CI-116 would add a new section to the Montana Constitution establishing specific rights for crime victims” I was sold.

All too often today we seem to have forgotten the rights of the victims. CI-166 guarantees crime victims’ rights to restitution, privacy, to confer with the prosecuting attorney, and to be informed of their rights. In my opinion, this is really a no-brainer. I urge you to vote “Yes” on CI-116.

Vote No – Ballot Issue I-177:

Subject: Prohibit the use of traps and snares for animals by the public on any public lands within Montana, with certain exceptions.

This one is very easy for me – ranching is important in Montana and anything that would harm the ranching community is not good for Montana. I-177 does that.

I’ve seen the destruction wolves can do on cattle and sheep and trapping is one of the tools they should be able to use to protect their livestock. I urge you to vote “No” on I-177.

Vote Yes – Ballot Issue I-181:

Subject: Promote research into developing therapies and cures for brain diseases and injuries.

The first thing I liked about I-181 was that it would be used to help my fellow veterans. The second thing I liked was that it would be used to fund research in Montana which means jobs.

We can’t go wrong with this – I urge you to vote “Yes” on I-181.

Vote Yes – Ballot Issue I-182:

Subject: Expand access to medical marijuana.

Along with a majority of voters in 2004, I voted for I-148, the “Medical Marijuana Act,” but in 2011 some of the clowns in the state legislature changed the Act.

I am for the full legalization of marijuana. It’s just a matter of time, but in the meantime, I know people who can use medical marijuana to help ease their pain and suffering. They need to have easy access to medical marijuana and I-182 helps with that.

That’s why I will be voting “Yes” on I-182.

For More Information:

The state of Montana produces a Voter Information Pamphlet to assist you in making informed decisions about the issues that will appear on the 2016 General Election ballot. In the pamphlet, each initiative has a proponent and opponent arguments and rebuttals which I always enjoy reading because I am a political junkie. There are also some websites and Facebook pages, letters to the editor, and opinions, dedicated to the initiatives that you can find by searching for the initiative number (CI-116, I-177, I-181, I-182).

You can access a PDF of the Voter Information Pamphlet by clicking HERE.

Have a different opinion or do you agree with me? The comment section is open to take your opinion. If you want to email me with your thoughts, you can do that by emailing me at Western_Word@Yahoo.com.

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3 thoughts on “ELECTION 2016: Montana’s Four Ballot Initiatives

  1. I’ll be voting against I-181, the brain research one.

    It’ll cost Montana $325 million after we pay back the $200 million in bonds that out of state companies force us to borrow to pay for their research. It’ll take 20 years to pay that back.

    Montana Medicaid already paid $140 million for Alzheimer’s research in 2015. By 2025 we’ll have spent $1.4 billion.

    Let the feds give us transfer payments to fund this, as they’re doing now. We don’t need to vote for this.

  2. I get it that it’s difficult to be against a crime victims bill but I am. This is a poorly written bill that is going to be a nightmare for the various groups involved. I fully expect it to pass but don’t be shocked when the problems arise as a result.

    • Rick – Thanks! I expect it to pass easily, too. I hope that any problems that arise can be corrected quickly and in a non-partisan manner. -JmB

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