Texas Constitution History

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The Texas Constitution is a document that explains what powers and authority the government has and how far that authority and power extends (Champagne and Harpham 71). Much of the rationale behind changing the Texas Constitution over the years has been to make sure that these regulations on power and authority are practical for the current time. In addition, we add amendments to the constitution in order to make it align with the current views and needs of society (Champagne and Harpham 70-71). Throughout the history of Texas there have been numerous attempts to try to reform or change aspects of the Texas Constitution. In more recent years one such attempt took place in 1974. This attempt was brought on by a stock fraud that occurred in…show more content…
It was proposed by Bill Ratliff a state senator and Rob Junell a state representative, who both wanted to bring Texas into the twenty-first century (Champagne and Harpham 92). Their reasoning for this had been that the 1876 Constitution was “too restrictive and cumbersome…lengthy, cluttered, and disorganized” (Champagne and Harpham 92). Ratliff and Junell wanted the governor to have the power to appoint several state officeholders, an appointed cabinet of department heads, and the power to be able to appoint both the appellate and district court judges. On the topic of judges, those who would be appointed by the governor would have to participate in retention elections in order to get an idea of their approval rating. By giving the governor all this power they believed that it would help the governor with understanding how the state government is functioning under his control. This was also expected to make the governor more accountable (Champagne and Harpham 92-93). Ratliff and Junell also wanted to change the terms for both state senators and state representatives. They intended to change state senators term limits to six years instead of four years and state representatives would serve four year terms instead of two year terms. In addition, senators would only be able to serve for eighteen years in office while representatives would only be able to serve sixteen years in office. In the end this new constitution was not passed. It proved to be a tough sell for the people of Texas and the so the Constitution of 1876 remained in place (Champagne and Harpham

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