Lindstrom won’t support amendments to constitution
BRECKENRIDGE – State Rep. Gary Lindstrom supports the issues behind four ballot questions facing voters Nov. 2, but he opposes them because they will potentially amend the state constitution. “I think there are better ways to govern the state of Colorado other than amendments to the constitution,” Lindstrom said Friday. “I am opposed to all the amendments but am in favor of the issues and what they’re trying to accomplish.”As a result, the former Summit County commissioner does not support Amendment 34 – a proposal to increase limits on construction liability claims. Amendment 34 aims to remove caps on the amount homeowners can claim for shoddy construction work. Home builders throughout the state oppose it, saying it would invite lawsuits not just within the industry but even for homeowners. They’ve raised more than $1 million to fight it.Lindstrom was originally quoted Aug. 22 in the Summit Daily News saying he supported Amendment 34.Since then, he said Friday, he decided he does not philosophically support constitutional amendments. He added that he would consider sponsoring future legislation to allow the recovery of actual costs in a construction liability lawsuit.”I want to represent the people buying a house. I don’t want to be an advocate for the home builders,” he said.Lindstrom, a Democrat, is running against Eagle County resident and Republican Heather Lemon for the District 56 seat in the state House of Representatives.Voters will be asked to consider three other amendments on Nov. 2: Amendment 35 asks for a higher tobacco tax, Amendment 36 asks voters to split the state’s electoral college votes instead of winner take all, and Amendment 37 proposes to increase renewable energy provided by large energy companies.Lindstrom is one of a growing number of legislators who do not support constitutional changes in an effort to protect the constitution from “getting loaded up with a lot of things that should not be in there.”Colorado’s constitution includes, among other extraneous items, changes to bear hunting season and a prohibition on the Olympics being held in the state. “Should that be in the constitution?” said Lindstrom, who teaches political science at Colorado Mountain College.”I talk about what a cherished document the constitution is and how we need to protect it. If it’s a difficult document to change, we end up with a stronger government because we’re not running willy nilly making amendments.” Kim Marquis can be contacted at (970) 668-3998, ext. 249, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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