By Greg Wasson | For The Register-Guard |
Oregon’s 1859 Constitution gave state lawmakers exclusive power to propose constitutional amendments, the unassailable authority to impose obnoxious statutes, and the right, at will, to amend any local charter or veto any local law. In addition — per the federal Constitution — the Legislature, not the voters, decided who would represent Oregon in the U.S. Senate.
Over the next 50 years, Oregonians wrested those powers from the Legislature and took them into their own hands. But now those powers are slipping away.