Court Case Overview of the Ballot Summary for Amendment 3

It’s been a busy month for the NO on 3 campaign as we continue to fight back against politicians’ attempt to trick voters in November. The politicians behind Amendment 3 won’t give up because they know voters will reject their extreme gerrymandering scheme once they learn what’s hidden in the fine print.

A few weeks ago, we took politicians to court to make sure their dishonest and deceptive ballot summary language wouldn’t be printed on November ballots. And we won. A judge in Cole County compared the facts with the politicians’ ballot language, and struck it down: 

“Nearly every aspect of this statement is wrong or misleading”

Last week, two separate amicus briefs were filed ahead of a Western Court of Appeals hearing in support of a citizens’ challenge of the dishonest ballot language of Amendment 3.

One brief was filed by a bipartisan group of former legislators. The brief highlighted who will benefit if Amendment 3 passes — incumbent politicians. 

“[L]egislators are direct beneficiaries of the proposed amendment because it gives them and political party officials more control over the redistricting process and alters the State’s redistricting criteria to redefine and minimize the importance of partisan fairness and competitiveness.”

The second brief was filed by civil rights leaders. It explains how Amendment 3 would trick voters into gutting nationally-recognized voter protections enshrined in Missouri’s constitution. 

“[T]he summary statement [proposed by the politicians pushing Amendment 3] misleads voters into believing that Amendment 3 would provide people of color with additional voting-rights protections, when in reality, it would strip away the very protections added only two years ago.” 

This week, we celebrated another victory when a second court ruled (once again) that legislators tried to deceive voters. The 3-judge panel described “major problems” in the politicians’ proposed ballot summary language for their gerrymandering plan

And, the Court made clear that voters need to know that politicians are seeking to,

“…substantially modify, and reorder, the redistricting criteria approved by voters in the November 2018 general election.”  

Now through Election Day, we’ll continue to call out politicians’ attempt to deceive Missouri voters. Politicians are using trivial changes to contribution and gift limits to distract voters from what Amendment 3 is all about.

Here are the facts: Amendment 3 only changes gift limits by $5  (with exemptions for some lobbyists) and only lowers contributions to state senate candidates by $100. That’s not reform, that’s a smokescreen.

We can’t keep our politicians accountable without your help. Here’s what you can do RIGHT NOW to help defeat Amendment 3:

  1. Volunteer and sign-up to phone bank with the campaign
  2. Use your voice by writing a letter to your local newspaper editor
  3. Host us at an upcoming membership meeting for your organization