Proposal 5: Supermajority Vote

Proposal 5: Supermajority Vote

Background: Would amend the Michigan constitution to require a 2/3 majority vote of the legislature, or a statewide vote of the people at a November election to impose new or additional taxes on taxpayers, expand the base of taxation or increase tax rates.

What it does: Gives a small minority of just 13 state senators the power to stop the closure of tax loopholes or increase taxes in an emergency, even if it was supported by the other 135 members of the legislature. Would lead to larger class sizes, closures of hospitals and decreased police and fire protection, while property taxes increase. Would cost jobs by lowering the state’s bond rating, driving up borrowing costs and increasing debt.

Proposal 5 is opposed by:

A. Philip Randolph Institute


Michigan Alliance for Immigrants Rights / Michigan Organizing Project

America Votes

Clean Water Action

Equality Michigan

Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA) of Greater Lansing Area

Michigan AFL-CIO

Michigan AFSCME Council 25

Michigan Association for Justice

Michigan Education Association

Michigan Environmental Council

Michigan Laborers Union

Michigan League for Human Services

Michigan League of Conservation Voters

Michigan NOW

One Michigan

Progress Michigan

ROC- Michigan

SEIU Michigan State Council

Sierra Club Michigan Chapter

Sugar Law Center for Economic & Social Justice



Xicano Development Center

Proposal 5 is supported by:

Ambassador Bridge Owner Matty Moroun

Independent Tea Party Patriots

Lapeer County Tea Party Patriots

Tea Party Americans for Prosperity

ReTakeOurGov Tea Party

Rattle With Us Tea Party

Washington Lobbyist Grover Norquist

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19 Comments on "Proposal 5: Supermajority Vote"

  • J.Smith says

    From what I understand, this is the legislation that has caused California enormous problems and is in large part responsible for their financial woes. It prohibits flexible approaches to governing when needed as changes in the State’s needs and economy occur. I believe this is backed by ALEC, the Koch Brothers, etc. and is all part and parcel of the nation wide attempt to essentially paralyze legitimate government actions based upon ideology versus the pragmatic reality oriented approach needed to adequately address and respond to needs over time.

    • Bradley B says

      This is pretty complex even after reading through all the comments but all I really needed to see was 2 things: 1. ALEC and 2. Koch Brothers. My instincts tell me to say no to big brother…

  • This reminds me of mandatory sentencing laws – which have turned out to be terrible and acted against the interests of justice when they were promoted to do just the opposite.
    Much better to get informed and elect officials who will truly act in the public interest.
    Mismanagement and corruption are not resolved by passing more limiting legislation, but by enforcing rational measures already in place.
    If we can’t trust our representatives to do the right thing, we should not be electing them to office.
    I’m voting NO on this proposal.

  • DEBRA says

    I appreciate the analysis provided on this one by League for Responsible Voters! Thank you!

  • George Lucas says

    Anything Grover Norquist supports a sane, responsible, concerned voter should be against.

  • peter romano says

    Very much against this proposal, please keep fighting this one. This has to be stopped!

  • angela platt says

    Detroit can NOT afford to loose anymore police. Even before they laid off at least half the force it was hard to get them to come out on a call. If this proposal passes then Detroit may suffer more than the rest. Then there is the E.M.S. in Detroit which SUCKS big time, they can NOT afford to have anymore taken away either. No I am NOT from Detroit, but I did grow-up there most of my life. I just care what happens to the city that I once truly loved. Maybe one day in the future it will be the same, I may not be here to see it, but my daughter will. Then she will understand what I have been telling her all these years. I personally feel that no city should be without police, emergency services at their homes, or fire rescue. People should vote NO on this. May I be so blunt as to say they should vote HELL NO!!!!! :( It will only hurt us.

    • Thank you for your support. I’m a Detroit Police Officer, who also was born and raised in Detroit. I feel this city treats, EMS, Police, Teacher so poorly. I’ve decided to look for another career. (Even if it means to live in another state) None of us took our public service jobs to become rich, but I’ll be damned if I become poor while putting my life on the line. So I’ve decided while having 13 years on the job, it’s not worth staying 25. I would rather work some where else, with possible the same treatment, without putting my life on the line daily. My life, my income, my union are worth more then the pennies, and BS, that Detroit City Council Charles Pugh/Goonies have to offer! But for those of you who support us thank you. With out 911, who do you call for help.

  • Eric says

    Is it just me or does someone not know how to do math? This proposal needs 74 Congressional Representatives and 25 senators to pass or 36 and 13 against, not 13 against and 135 for. Those numbers above say that with this proposal we need a unanimous vote of the Representatives and a 2/3 vote of the senate. So in actuality it would take 49 members of the congress and Senate to vote down the proposed measures. So yes it would take 13 member of the Senate to vote down the measures passed, but it would have taken the other 49 members of Congress to do the same.

    Assuming there is a unanimous vote in congress, then yes it leaves 13 people to decide the fate of the new proposed tax, but these future taxes already had to go up against the 49 that would allow or not the measure to pass in Congress.

    • ResponsibleVoters says

      Eric, the Michigan Legislature has two chambers (bicameral): the Senate and the House. It would only take 13 Senators to stop legislation in the Senate.

  • Douglas says

    Shame on the tea party for all of this non-sence. We have money to build bridges but, not enough for fire fighters, teachers , police, ect. I don’t know what happened to the people of Michigan, this would’nt have even been on a ballot 20 yrs ago. I think that we learn in fifth grade if we are not rich we are Democrats. This craziness of calling the president of the free world a communist? This reminds me of the Hoover days. My God please wake up people stop the witch hunts, all the witches were burned in Salem. The President is a good man. Don’t forget what we lost under bush. How many of our Children did we give up for him besides homes, jobs, cars,and most of all people. No more scare tactics don’t let it work on you.

    • Crystal Hawkins says

      Nonsense* seriously? wtf

  • Dan Meldrum says

    I was wondering if someone could explain to me why in the explaination of what this proposal does, it states, “Gives a small minority of just 13 state senators the power to stop the closure of tax loopholes or increase taxes in an emergency, even if it was supported by the other 135 members of the legislature.” So, if you have a minority of 13 senators plus 135 other members, the total is 148, of which the minority (13) is only about 8.8%. How is it that 8.8% could have the power to do ANYTHING when the proposal is calling for a 2/3 vote? What am I missing here?

    • ResponsibleVoters says

      Dan, the Michigan Legislature has two chambers (bicameral): the Senate and the House. It would only take 13 Senators to stop legislation in the Senate.

    • Lisa says

      I am also trying to understand this. HELP!!

      • Lisa says

        So r u saying 13 senators are more than 2/3 the vote?

        • ResponsibleVoters says

          The Michigan Legislature is bicameral, and legislation moves from one chamber to the next. Because it would require a supermajority (2/3 plus one) to pass new or additional taxes, it would only require 13 Michigan Senators (out of 38) voting no to stop legislation.

  • Crystal Hawkins says

    Thanks for helping me to undestand!!

  • Chris says

    Im confused. Wouldn’t this mean almost nothing would get done unless 1 party would hold almost everything? Since when was a majority not good enough? Now it has to be a supermajority? Sounds more like attempts to block the minority party.

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