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secretary of labor and state business managers to hold office during his pleasure; (3) that the governor shall take charge of all administrative boards and have power to remove all administrative officers and employes; (4) that the governor and his cabinet shall have seats on the floor of both houses of the legislature; (5) that the governor may introduce measures and resolutions in the house of representatives and must introduce appropriation bills for the maintenance of state institutions; (6) that the governor and the members of the cabinet may speak and move for these administrative measures and that the governor may appeal them from the legislature to the people; and (7) that when attending legislative sessions the governor and the cabinet members must answer written questions put to them.
In connection with this proposal it should be remembered that in Oregon “Every public officer
is subject to recall by the legal voters of the State.” The proposed in
." crease of power in the hands of the governor would thus be accompanied by this potent method of popular control.
To the assertion that direct participation in its proceedings by the executive would diminish still further the prestige of the already declining legislature, State Senator Ogden L. Mills of New York takes sharp exception, —
It could not but have a stimulating influence on the members while offering an inducement to ambitious men to enter this branch of the public service. The last is particularly true when you consider that under such a system a practice would almost inevitably grow up of choosing heads of departments from among the members of the legislature not only because of their familiarity with the machinery of government, but because of their skill in debate acquired while either supporting the administartion or opposing it.
Finally, many writers have commented on the fact that in any government there is bound to be a leader. If a recognized and responsible leader is not provided in the frame of govern
The business manager's functions are to organize, consolidate and manage the business departments and affairs of the state_"these being such as deal largely with money and money's worth"-with a view to obtaining efficiency and full value. The governor is to fix his salary, subject to reduction on popular referendum,
"The plan includes, also, a state auditor elected by the people for a six-year term. He must have five years' experience as an accountant.
ment some irresponsible and probably unknown dictator or party "boss" will inevitably arise. "If the governor is not the leader of his party,” says Professor Edgar Dawson,
then let us find the leader of the party and elect him. If we do not want to elect the boss governor, then let us give the man we do elect an opportunity to act as the party leader, as the one who initiates the policies of his own administration, and requires the legislature to say whether it is willing to do what the leader of the majority believes the party has promised to do.
The increasing volume of such discussion indicates that Professor Beard was correct when he said
In the democratic state, where the rule of the majority is frankly recognized (a condition of affairs gravely feared by the framers of our Constitution) government tends toward a type, unified in internal structure, emancipated from formal limitations, and charged with direct respon-' sibility to the source of power.*
TENNESSEE NOTE.—The North Carolina Constitution of 1776 expressly declared that the three departments of government ought to be separate, but it made the legislature the predominating power.
The stress of war times tended, however, to increase the power of the executive officials appointed by the legislature, and the courts, whose judges were like wise appointed to serve during good behavior, assumed the authority to declare legislative enactments unconstitutional. Officers elected by the legislature for life or for fixed terms, it should be carefully noted, even though they are liable to impeachment or removal by the legislature, are not responsible to the legislature in the same sense as are cabinet ministers in England. The latter are in the first place members of the legislature and in the second place they resign as a matter of course whenever the legislature disagrees with them.
The Constitution of 1796 did not mention the separation of powers but provided separately for each. In the 1834 constitution a clause was inserted which divided the powers of government into the legislative, executive and judicial departments. In 1870 as a result of the highhanded acts of the Unionist government, provisions were incorporated increasing the checks and balances and taking away some of the governor's powers.
30f Hunter College,–Proceedings of Academy of Political Science, V', 1, 140.
* Politics, 20, referring to Federal Constitution in the parentheses. Doubtless not a little of the fear of government exhibited by the early state constitutions was due to the fear of the propertied classes that the masses of the people might, through governments easily operated, secure laws interfering with property "rights."
5gupra, p. 64.
THE SHORT BALLOT.1
"The greatest American political problem," says a wellknown New Yorker,2
is to cause all the people to think upon the same subject at the same time. The next in point of importance is to cause them to express their views in the only effective way: at the polls.
112. Nature and
In order that all people may be persuaded to think upon a particular subject that subject must be of genuine importance. Purpose of In order that they may express their views intelligently and Ballot Idea. effectively at the polls, the voting process must be sufficiently simple to be thoroughly understod and every candidate for every office must be sufficiently well-known for his qualifications to be adequately appraised. The ballot must be so short, in other words, says the Secretary of the Short-Ballot Organization,
that the number of choices to be made by the voters will not be so great as to conceal the individual candidates from a public scrutiny that will be adequate to exclude any one whom tbe voters do not really want.
The purpose back of the movement for a shorter ballot, for seeking to relieve the electorate from direct participation in the choice of the numerous officials that are now elective, is to enable the voters to concentrate their attention upon a very few candidates and so have better hope of choosing wisely and of placing honor and blame where they are respectively due. It is a kindergarten lesson in politics that Madame Montessori might consistently teach and it is advocated with equal insistence by radical and conservative thinkers. The movement is palpably a reaction from the system of referring to the electorate the selection of officials all the way from constable to
1General References : Childs, Richard S., Short-Ballot Principles ; Beard, C. A., The Ballot's Burden (24 Political Science Quarterly, 589. seq.); Short Ballot Bulletin (Published by National Short Ballot Organization).
Job E. Hedges, Common Sense in Politics, 201-2.
presidential elector. It is a sign of the maturing of the erstwhile adolescent democracy of American politics and it presents a more thoroughly-digested program for securing popular control.
Inseparable from the underlying purpose of the short ballot are others of equal significance. Among them are the demand for greater efficiency, hence the necessity for the harmony resulting from appointment of lower officials by the higher; the demand for longer terms that officials may become efficient in their positions; and the general tendency toward centralization of power-and responsibility--in the hands of a few,-an idea once considered, as Professor Beard says, "a species of original sin,” but apparently becoming steadily more widely accepted.
One of the radical newspapers of the country thus accounts for the original statement of the short ballot idea,
About fifteen years ago, a senior student at Yale played with the problems of government in his graduating thesis. He set out to analyze the failure of our republican form of machinery, to find out why democracy did not have a representative and responsible government. He looked at the ballot of New York state with its five feet of names of candidates. And his first thought was: who in the name of Heaven ever knows who all these men are? Why, nobody but the bosses. The people aren't expected to know who is running for state engineer who is to handle millions of dollars of contract of people's money. Obviously the reason that our government is bad is because the people vote and do not know whom they are voting for. To know enough about all the candidates to pass intelligent judgment would require time and labor beyond that which the voter (an afford to give. We must shorten the ballot, said this student, we must let these offices be appointed, and hold the appointer responsible, as the people hold the President of the United States responsible for the conduct of every member of the cabinet."
The states began their political history, however, with the short ballot as a fact. The early constitutions centered in the legislature the appointment of state and sometimes local officials, often from the governor down. In New York, each year, the Assembly "selected a senator from each of the four great districts into which the state was divided, and the four senators
5Editorial, 'isconsin State Journal (Madison), Sept. 3, 1915, referring to Richard S. Childs.
with the governor" constituted a council of appointment. "In actual practice each member
claimed a nominaitng power equal to that of the governor."
The manifest evils of appointments by a body of persons, such as a council or legislature, especially the evils of log-rolling and the entire lack of individual responsibility, made change of some sort urgent and the ascendent democracy of the second quarter of the nineteenth century placed in the hands of the people themselves the appointment of very many officials theretofore elected by the legislature. The governor had not in those days gained the popular confidence he today enjoys, but was, like the legislature, in bad repute with the people. Hence to transfer to him the legislature's appointing power was not seriously thought of.
The characteristic long ballot of the ante-bellum constitutions has been continued in their successors. The number of Officers
Required in officers required to be elective, while varying considerably from Present Constate to state, is generally greater, even for state officers, than would be approved by advocates of the short ballot. A few examples will be sufficiently illustrative.
The practice in New Jersey is most in accord with short ballot principles. The constitution requires the popular election of only the legislature and governor, justices of the peace, sheriffs and coroners and provides that all officers whose appointment or election is not otherwise directed by law shall be appointed by the governor and senate.S
In Oklahoma, however, the people must elect the members of the legislature, governor, lieutenant-governor, state auditor, secretary of state, attorney general, state treasurer, superintendent of public instruction, state examiner and inspector, 'commissioner of labor, insurance commissioner, chief mine inspector, commissioner of charities and corrections and three corporation commissioners; justices of the supreme court, clerk of the supreme court, district judges and county judges; and, apparently, county attorney, clerk of the district court, county
Beard, op. cit., 593.
"For Gov. DeWitt Clinton's denunciation of this system, see Lincoln, Chas. 2., Constitutional History of Ver York. III. 615.
XIV, 1 (3); V, 2; VI, 7 (1); VII, 2 (7, 8, 9).