The special session is motivated by a court ruling earlier this week that threw a similar question off of November's ballot for violating the "one subject only" rule for amendments to the AZ Constitution.
Originally, many observers, including me, thought that there wouldn't be enough time for such a "special" session, as they take a minimum of three days, and the "drop dead" date for submitting ballot language to the Secretary of State's office is Tuesday.
However, Republican SOS Ken Bennett came to the rescue of his fellow GOPers, pledging to hold the ballot open long enough to allow for the special session.
On Friday, the proposed new language was posted on the lege's website in the form of HCR 2001.
The new language, from the bill -
Be it resolved by the House of Representatives of the State of Arizona, the Senate concurring:HCR2001 is scheduled to be
1. Article II, Constitution of Arizona, is proposed to be amended by adding section 36 as follows if approved by the voters and on proclamation of the Governor:
36. Right to secret ballot; employee representation
SECTION 36. THE RIGHT TO VOTE BY SECRET BALLOT FOR EMPLOYEE REPRESENTATION IS FUNDAMENTAL AND SHALL BE GUARANTEED WHERE LOCAL, STATE OR FEDERAL LAW PERMITS OR REQUIRES ELECTIONS, DESIGNATIONS OR AUTHORIZATIONS FOR EMPLOYEE REPRESENTATION.
2. The Secretary of State shall submit this proposition to the voters at the next general election as provided by article XXI, Constitution of Arizona.
It's likely that the Senate will consider and pass an identical version, and one version will be swapped into the other to expedite matters.
While the language hasn't been posted as yet, a bill numbered SCR1001 will be considered by the Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday.
I'm not a lawyer, so there are probably legal and constitutional issues with the new language that I don't understand, but I *do* see a tactical issue.
"Card check" hasn't actually passed both chambers of the U.S. Congress and been signed into law. By passing this now (and for the sake of this post, I am assuming that the lege puts this back on the ballot and it passes the voters), the Arizona lege will allow the people in Congress behind the Card Check bills to adapt their bills to the industry-sponsored language that the lege is putting on the ballot.
Having said all that, my guess is that union lawyers are lurking in the tall grass for this one, and if the language is anything less than perfectly bulletproof, it'll get thrown off of the ballot again.
More as the special session gets closer...
Edit to add the comment I submitted to the lege opposing HCR2001 and SCR1001 -
Of all of the problems that Arizona is facing right now, an anti-union ballot measure is the one that is considered important enough to merit a special session?
Where is the special session to address inadequate education funding, crumbling infrastructure, or even the lax oversight of the operations of private prisons (remember the escaped murderers running free across the state?).End edit...
Enough. This was a bad measure in its original form, and it is still bad.
No matter what the industry lobbyists tell you, workers are not the root of all that ails the state or even their businesses.
Vote against this resolution, and focus on actually doing something *for* Arizonans.