Pro-voucher forces are trying to muddy the waters. Here's why:
Today's Deseret News
An editorial column in Thursday's paper mixed up the two private school voucher bill numbers. HB148, the main voucher bill, is the subject of a citizen referendum vote on Nov. 6. HB174, an amendment bill to HB148, passed the 2007 Legislature by two-thirds vote and by law is not subject to referendum repeal.
The leading story in that newspaper? Another high profile Dan Jones poll:
Republican legislative majorities to do what those leaders don't necessarily want to do.
Pollster Dan Jones & Associates found that 64 percent of Utahns would want Huntsman and the Legislature to repeal a second voucher law should voters reject vouchers at the polls Nov. 6.
Even worse for the Republicans, 76 percent of Utahns want Huntsman to call a special session this summer during which legislator's could "fix" the two-voucher bill problem — clearing the way for an unimpeded, simple up-or-down vote Nov. 6 on vouchers.
But even with those overwhelming numbers, Huntsman says he won't call a special session this summer. And it's possible that, should voters reject vouchers, Utah would still have a voucher law and the controversial program would go forward — for GOP legislators could refuse to repeal a second voucher law.
Meanwhile, it's hard to tell where Utahns will side in November. Forty-three percent of 410 Utahns surveyed May 21-24 say they favor vouchers, and 47 percent oppose them. Considering the error margin of plus or minus 5 percent, public opinion is a virtual dead heat, just as it was earlier this year before legislators passed the voucher program.
I really hope voters remember how anti-democratic Utah's state leadership--Gov. Huntsman, Speaker Curtis, Sen. President Valentine--all have been throughout this session in particular, and especially on this issue. Next November, throw as many of those bums out as you can.