I urge my Reps. Horman and Marshall to vote no on Senate Bill 1110. This bill would make it almost impossible to get a grassroots initiative on the ballot by requiring signatures from at least 6% of voters in all 35 of Idaho’s districts (up from the 18 districts currently required). Remoter parts of some districts are hard to reach even for the local volunteers living within the district’s borders. Yet the ballot initiative is a constitutional right for all Idahoans and so should not be made impossibly hard to achieve for a grassroots campaign.

When I volunteered for Medicaid expansion (Proposition 2), we knocked on doors throughout our districts, sometimes multiple times, as people were out, in order to achieve the qualification threshold. I went door to door almost every evening and weekend after my day’s work in one of our major hospitals.

If we had had the rules in this bill, Medicaid expansion would not have got on the ballot. And yet this was a campaign that succeeded in the vast majority of rural as well as urban areas, passing with 54% of the electoral vote in our District 30 (the “donut” outside Idaho Falls). The benefits of Proposition 2 have helped keep rural hospitals open. Idahoans across the state have been able to get health care who couldn’t have done that without citizens passing Proposition 2.

I urge you to vote against the impossible restrictions of this bill that would put such important issues out of reach for ordinary citizens.

Melanie Edwards

Idaho Falls