There are 13 proposed state constitutional amendments on the Florida ballot this November. In this paper, you will choose one of the initiatives and analyze the policy and process behind the issue. The paper should be 5 pages, double-spaced, and comply with the basic outline provided in the syllabus and at the end of this assignment handout. Other resources have also been included to help with your research. This paper will require much research, and you are required to cite properly. Spelling and grammar are important and impact your grade. The writing center is an excellent resource to ensure you have properly cited and used the correct grammar and spelling. .
Choosing an Initiative
If you have not been paying close attention to the constitutional amendments this season, visit the link below to find out what is on the ballot. If you have been following a particular amendment, great! The link below will still provide some in-depth information for your paper. Choose an initiative from the 13 to write about.
http://dos.elections.myflorida.com/initiatives/ (Links to an external site.)
Narrow the search parameters by choosing Year: 2018; Status: Active; and Clicking “On Ballot.” The results will show you the ballot number of the initiative, and which organization sponsored it.
Body of Paper
Summary (1 Paragraph)
The paper should begin with a summary of the amendment. This does not mean the verbatim text of the ballot language, but a summary of what the initiative proposed. If the amendment was sponsored by the legislature, the summary can come from a bill analysis or full bill text (available by searching the bill number on the Florida Senate/House website). If the sponsor is the Constitutional Commission Revision Committee, you can use their final report (https://www.flcrc.gov/PublishedContent/ADMINISTRATIVEPUBLICATIONS/CRCFinalReport.pdf (Links to an external site.)). If there is another sponsor, the proposal’s full text summary found on the Department of Elections website will be a good starting point. The summary can incorporate political and media analysis, but should remain as non-biased as possible. The point of this section of the paper is to explain what the constitutional amendment would do/prevent if passed.
Sponsor (1-2 paragraphs)
Now that the reader knows what the constitutional amendment in question concerns, explain what group has proposed the initiative and how. There are three types of sponsors this election season: the Constitutional Revision Commission (CRC), the Florida Legislature, and political action groups (PAC). Each has a unique path to get a constitutional amendment on a statewide ballot. Explain that process. If the sponsor is a PAC, provide more details about who comprises that PAC, how it receives money, and any other amendments it has proposed. If the sponsor is the CRC, explain what the CRC is and its purpose.
Debate (2-3 paragraphs)
Research the proponent/opponent opinions of the amendment. Explain, in depth and relying on sources, what the proponents and opponents of the amendment have debated about the amendment. It will not be sufficient to claim that the amendment had been universally accepted. If you believe you have come across and amendment that has no opposition, it is advisable to choose a different amendment. Give both sides of the story. Also include any legal concerns that may have arisen around the amendment.
Outcome (1 paragraph)
Conclude with your own reasoned opinion of the amendment. Should it pass, should it fail? Provide an explanation of this opinion. Avoid the temptation to appeal to your passions, and use your rational mind to explain.
Papers should be a minimum of five (FULL) pages, maximum of eight. This is a research-heavy paper and should cite all material used. Consult the instructor if you are unsure about what to cite. Submit the paper into Canvas by the due date and time.
Font: 12 pt., Times New Roman, double spacing, 1-inch margins, with page numbers in bottom, right-hand footer.
Name, course number, and assignment due date should be written in the top right-hand corner of the first page – this does not need to be written on every page of the paper.
Papers should be written in paragraph form, with complete sentences. No bullet points.
Grammar and spelling will be taken into account in grading. If you are unsure of your writing skills, contact the HCC writing center. Their input will benefit you in this class and in the future.
Any ideas or words used that are not your own should be properly cited, MLA format. The instructor prefers footnotes, but in-text citations are acceptable. Include a works cited/bibliography as the last page.
FORMATTING DETAILS MATTER