New York voters will be asked on November 7th whether they want to call a constitutional convention — as required by law every 20 years — where elected delegates would consider changes to the governmental blueprint. If a convention is approved, any recommended changes would have to be ratified by voters.
From the NY Times:
Labor unions are leading the fight against a New York ballot measure to hold a constitutional convention, arguing that it’s just too risky to tinker with the state’s governing document and threaten existing protections for worker’s compensation, unemployment benefits and collective bargaining.
“We have some of the strongest labor protections in our state constitution of any state in the country,” said state AFL-CIO President Mario Cilento, whose organization is using bumper stickers, yard signs and social media to get their message out. “We’re treating this like any other political campaign.”
Supporters of a convention say the Nov. 7 ballot measure is a chance to address New York state’s chronic corruption and to strengthen constitutional provisions for the environment, health care and education. They say unions are just looking to protect the status quo.
“If Albany is working for you then you should definitely not support a constitutional convention,” said Al Benninghoff, campaign director for New York Says Yes, a group advocating for a convention. “But if you’re like the rest of us … does anyone think it’s going to get better on its own?”