Citizens in Charge Launches I&R Pledge in Virginia

Fri, Sep 27 2013 by Neal Hobson

For the first time, Citizens in Charge has sent an Initiative & Referendum Pledge to all candidates running for the legislature and for governor in this year’s Virginia elections.  The pledge asks candidates to support initiative and referendum through a constitutional amendment that if proposed by legislators and passed by voters would make the Old Dominion the 27th state where citizens have the right to initiate or refer laws to the ballot by petition.

The Initiative & Referendum Pledge for state legislative candidates reads: “If elected to the Virginia General Assembly, I solemnly pledge to do my utmost to propose an amendment to the state constitution, which will, if passed by voters, establish a statewide process of initiative and referendum. I will support, vote for and, if necessary, sponsor such an amendment.”

Virginians support initiative and referendum by a nearly 5 to 1 margin, according to a 2010 Pulse Opinion Research poll that found 61% of likely voters in favor of bringing the initiative process to Virginia and a mere 13% opposed.

Citizens in Charge asked all candidates to return the pledge by September 25, so the public could be informed about which candidates have signed and which have not. We also encouraged candidates, whether they sign the pledge or not, to provide whatever statement they would like on this important issue. We will continue to accept pledges and publicize the statements we receive from candidates regarding bringing initiative and referendum to Virginia.

Read the letter sent to candidates:

See the pledge sent to legislative candidates: Leg Candidates.pdf

See the pledge sent to gubernatorial candidates: Gov Candidates.pdf

View the results of the poll: