Amendments 1 and 3 explained

Along with casting your vote for president and statewide officials during the general election Nov. 3, you will also come across two statewide ballot measures, Amendment 1 and Amendment 3.

Amendment 1, the State Executive Term Limits Amendment, would limit the lieutenant governor, secretary of state, state auditor and attorney general to two terms of office in a lifetime. As of 2019, the state constitution limited the governor and state treasurer to two terms of office in a lifetime but not the other executive offices.

A “yes” vote will amend the Missouri Constitution to uniformly impose a two-term restriction on all statewide elected officials, which currently only applies to the governor and treasurer.

A “no” vote opposes this constitutional amendment, thereby keeping the two-term limit on the governor and state treasurer but not other state executive offices, leaving the terms statewide elected officials may serve unchanged.

There is also a provision for those stepping into office partway through a term. Those who have served more than two years of a partial term would only be able to run for one more term.

Amendment 3, the Redistricting Process and Criteria, Lobbying, and Campaign Finance Amendment, proposes three changes. It would return the state to the use of bipartisan commissions appointed by the governor for legislative redistricting, eliminating the nonpartisan state demographer, to be appointed by the state auditor that was created by the approval of Amendment 1 (2018). The amendment would also change the criteria used to draw district maps, in addition to changing the threshold of lobbyists’ gifts and lower the campaign contribution limit for state Senate campaigns.

A “yes” vote supports amending the Missouri Constitution to eliminate the state demographer approach to redistricting and return to a bipartisan commission appointed by the governor; alter criteria for redistricting, reduce lobbyist gifts from $5 threshold to $0 and decrease the maximum contribution limit for state Senate campaigns from $2,500 to $2,400.

A “no” vote will not amend the Missouri Constitution for the above issues.

In short, though Amendment 3 deals with several topics, it’s primarily about how redistricting should be done. If you believe redistricting should be done by a committee appointed by the governor instead of by a state demographer appointed by the auditor, then you will want to vote “yes”.