If government OF the people is to be government FOR the people, we must have GOVERNMENT BY THE PEOPLE!
The initiative is a s powerful form of direct democracy that allows citizens to propose and pass legislation without the involvement or approval of state legislatures or governors.
Twenty-four states have some form of initiative: Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
Initiative petitions are considerably more powerful than ordinary petitions.
The right to petition our government is enshrined in the First Amendment to our Constitution and petitions have long been a popular means of communicating the will of the people to our elected representatives.
The internet has made on-line petitions especially popular and common. They are relatively easy to circulate and sign and rarely have much effect on the members of Congress or state legislatures who unfortunately tend to listen more closely to political action committees and wealthy benefactors who write the big checks that help them get elected and re-elected.
Initiative petitions are fundamentally different. If the required number of signatures is obtained on an initiative petition, the proposed law or amendment must be placed on the ballot. If the proposed law or amendment wins at the polls, it becomes law.
Campaigns for ballot proposals are inherently non-partisan. They are focused on specific issues and reforms that typically have broad cross-partisan support. They provide an opportunity for concerned citizens to work together across party lines to pass needed reforms and legislation.
If enough citizens are willing to do the necessary work – circulating petitions and promoting proposals to voters – we can make the governments in states with the initiative shining examples of genuine democracy and good government. We believe that will eventually lead to demands for reforms (including the initiative) and pro-active legislation in other states and at the federal level.
Government by the People is a political action committee designed to serve as an organizing hub and a source of financial support for ballot proposals that reform the electoral process to make our elections and state governments more genuinely democratic and proposals that address critical issues that have gone unaddressed as a result of partisan gridlock and the corrupting influence of campaign contributions from corporate interests.
The list of reforms and issues we support can be found on “The People’s Platform” page. Sub-pages under that page offer additional details (including links to videos in some cases) regarding each reform or issue.
Under the “State-by-state” tab on this web site (a work in progress) you will find information regarding the details of the initiative process in each of the states that have some form of initiative, as well as information regarding ballot proposals related to our platform that have been filed in each state.
On the “Upcoming Events” page we post information about upcoming signing events related to our active petition campaigns.
The best way to stay informed is to sign up for our mailing list.