Politics surround Mo. ballot measures

Jul 9, 2012

Missouri Republicans have been complaining of political bias in a ballot summary for a health care measure written by Democratic Secretary of State Robin Carnahan.

It's not the first such controversy. In fact, nearly every ballot measure proposed in Missouri ends up facing a lawsuit alleging the official ballot title and financial estimate are unfair and insufficient. Sometimes, judges have agreed.

The politically charged atmosphere surrounding ballot measures raises the question of whether the responsibility for summarizing them should be transferred to a nonpartisan or bipartisan entity. One Republican secretary of state's candidate wants to create a special bipartisan board to approve ballot titles.

But a spokesman for Carnahan said she doesn't believe that would diminish the legal wrangling.