Many lessons can be learned from the debacle that was initiated Measure 3. To choose just one is difficult, but when these things come up in the future, I would encourage voters to follow the money. It is an easy task; the campaign finance disclosure forms are viewable on the Secretary of State website. There you will find for Measure #3 the money poured in from out of state, from Colorado and Massachusetts, $150,000 from Texas.

The important lesson to consider: where is the money coming from? Why are these outside groups interested in changing the North Dakota Constitution? Since they live and work elsewhere, the ND Constitution has no bearing on their lives. The answer is simple. Being so smart, they think they know what is best for North Dakota. If the measure was such a great idea for North Dakota, why could the proponents not raise money from North Dakotans?

Have you ever considered contributing money to a candidate or an initiated measure in Colorado, Massachusetts or Texas? I doubt it. You and I have not done so because what happens in those states is none of our business; how they run their elections and the makeup and shape of their legislative districts have no bearing on our lives. Again, that is the difference between you and me, and the out of state interests behind Measure 3. They think they know what is best for us sleepy folks in ND.

When candidates or referenda or initiated measures are presented to you, you might start by following the money. If the vast majority of it is from out of state that is a good indication to vote no.

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