Measure would allow recall of governor, state senators

The Government, Military and Veterans Affairs Committee heard testimony Feb. 2 on a proposed constitutional amendment that would allow Nebraska voters to recall the governor and state lawmakers.

Sen. Tom Briese
Sen. Tom Briese

If passed by the Legislature, LR268CA, introduced by Albion Sen. Tom Briese, would put the question before voters in the 2022 general election. If approved by voters, the Legislature would have to adopt enacting legislation to establish procedures for the process. Current state law already allows for the recall of local elected officials.

Briese said he thought recall elections would be rare, but would give citizens a chance to remove a corrupt official without having to wait for the next election.

“The bad actor in an elected office can do a whole lot of damage to our rights, our programs and our constituents’ faith in government with an extra two or three years [in office],” Briese said.

Doug Kagan of Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom testified in support of the measure. Expanding recall options would engage more voters and would encourage elected officials to follow through on campaign promises, he said.

“We cannot take back our votes given on Election Day to candidates who failed to keep campaign pledges,” Kagan said.

No one testified in opposition to the resolution and the committee took no immediate action on it.

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