Voters Favor Making State Legislature Part-Time

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

LANSING, Mich. (AP) -- More than half of Michigan voters favor making the state Legislature part-time, an idea that has been under discussion among lawmakers, according to poll results published Saturday.
The poll of 600 Michigan voters, conducted Sunday through Wednesday for The Detroit News and WXYZ-TV, found 51 percent favor the idea, 33 percent said they oppose the idea and 16 percent didn't know.
The poll also asked about whether term limits should be eliminated. Fifty percent supported the idea, 43 percent said they oppose the idea and 7 percent didn't know.
The margin of error was plus or minus 4 percentage points for the poll, conducted by EPIC/MRA of Lansing.
Michigan, like many of the country's largest states, is one of 11 states with a full-time legislature. State lawmakers may consider making their jobs part-time if voters do away with limits on how long they can serve.
The trade-off picked up more support earlier this month when Democratic Gov. Jennifer Granholm endorsed it. A Republican-led Senate committee also held a formal discussion on making the Michigan Legislature part-time.

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  • by John Location: Williamston on Jun 18, 2007 at 08:26 AM
    Once again a WMD - weapon of mass distraction. The issue in Michigan has nothing to do with a part time legislature, it has to do with the economy as a whole and it lack of diversification. I say it's 'all hands on deck' to fix the budget issue and serve the taxpayers, not go off on some unrelated tangent about part-time lawmakers. Granted, our eleceted representatives see fit to enact all sorts of unecessary and incomprehensilbe laws (in part because they have idle time to do such things) but the lawmaking will be no better if they were part time. Don't forget, they only want to be part time if they can 'serve' a lifetime. My guess is they will pull in about the same salary as they do now while maintaining a full-time staff. Once again a lose lose for mcihgan taxpayers.
  • by Vickie Location: Lansing on Jun 18, 2007 at 08:02 AM
    Why would there be such a delay in such a decision that would save the state money making our legislatures part time. What is there to consider? Come on Granholm, make it happen.
  • by Dennis Location: Denver, Colorado on Jun 17, 2007 at 09:07 PM
    Yes ... but the two questions are unrelated. A part time legislator is better. If they are in session full time, they feel obliged to make more laws. In Colorado with a p/t legislature they gave us 467 new laws this year. But the size of the statute books now, it seems difficult to justify so many new laws. And each new law makes more criminals. I don't think our population is quite as out of control that our legilslature seems to believe. Quite the contrary, if someone is out of control, it is the legislature. Fewer laws is better. Fewer laws might even yield better laws.
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