Convention Time?

The Story

Every 20 years, New York State gives its citizens the opportunity to vote on holding a constitutional convention. The choice comes again this November, and as usual, special interests are preparing alarmist campaigns warning of dire consequences if the state’s fundamental charter is revised. But with corruption and inefficiency pervading New York politics, a constitutional convention would be a welcome step toward achieving better government.

The Facts You Need to Know

  1. Pensions: New York’s public-sector pensions are underfunded, but changing the system is difficult because the state constitution guarantees these benefits. Read more.

  2. Interests: Public-sector unions like the status quo just fine and fiercely oppose a convention; they’re likely to spend over a million dollars fighting a Yes vote. Read more.

  3. Reform: The state legislature in Albany has consistently failed to deliver significant ethics reform; a constitutional convention could achieve this goal directly. Read more.

“We cannot afford to not hold a constitutional convention.”

Gerald Benjamin, Director, SUNY New Paltz Benjamin Center

Twitter Take

The Past is Present

Repairs for Broken Systems By John P. Avlon (August 2009)

“Citizens in California and New York are pushing for constitutional conventions.”

Featured Event

Shakespeare & Co. presents
Author’s Talk: Insane Consequences
with DJ Jaffe and Howard Husock
August 3, 2017 | New York, NY


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