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Privacy – Initiative Petition for a Constitutional Amendment for Privacy
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We wanted to put forward a privacy constitutional amendment quickly, because the federal government is proposing privacy laws to ‘preempt‘ state laws. The federal law being proposed is much weaker than existing laws in some states. If enacted as is, states could not make stronger laws.
A constitutional amendment should be a path to give Massachusetts greater standing to fight against any weak laws at the federal level and in Massachusetts.
We need to ask the candidates for attorney general in Massachusetts whether they would allow an initiative petition for a constitutional amendment for privacy to go forward in Massachusetts if preemptive legislation is passed by Congress or if the Supreme Court rules against privacy rights at the federal level.
To support an answer, you can also join Twitter like and share Kirstin’s Twitter post.
If the federal government preempts privacy, then an initiative petition on the subject may not be allowed, as the present attorney general has not certified a proposed initiative petition to say that corporations are not people on the basis of a ruling by the Supreme Court of the United States which says otherwise. If this attitude of federal deference is adopted by the future attorney general, this could be disastrous because the current Supreme Court is chipping away at privacy and federal legislators are proposing a law that would limit what some states have set as privacy protections.
Ideally, a constitutional amendment could be submitted next year, to give time for improvements and feedback to strengthen the law. We would very much like feedback for improvement and changes. Yet, if we go forward this year, we need to build cells of people to lobby their state legislators to insure that if they get the amendment, that if the voters put the amendment before them, that they will only support making changes, which they are allowed to propose, for the better.
Either way, we will need to raise money and organize. We will get a donation up, but need a bit of time for it all.
Amending Constitutional Amendments
If this goes forward, and if there are enough signatures, then the legislature has a change to make changes for the better or for the worse. Please share any ideas on amendments that could make this stronger and please consider joining to lobby the legislature.