This election season, in addition to Proposition 106, there are two other Colorado ballot measures that the Colorado Catholic Conference and Colorado’s bishops are urging Catholic voters to take firm stances on.
The first, Amendment 69, is a new universal healthcare plan being pushed by the State of Colorado, dubbed “ColoradoCare,” and would contract with healthcare providers to pay for certain healthcare benefits and responsible for administering Medicaid, children’s basic health programs, and all other state and federal healthcare funds.
Jenny Kraska, executive director of Colorado Catholic Conference, said they are opposed to Amendment 69 not only because of the way the bill is written, but because it has several “pitfalls and dangers” associated with it.
“Practically, in terms of how the [bill] is written, it’s a very poorly amendment that would affect our constitution,” Kraska said. “The other really troublesome aspect of it is the plan would be managed by 15 people who would have not necessarily any background or experience on anything having to do with medicine at all.
“They have to be elected but the problem is they can’t be fired. There’s no ability via the law to do a recall. We could potentially be putting people on here that end up not implementing the things we want them to implement without any recourse for having a process to legitimately get rid of them if they’re not doing their jobs. Although in theory providing more healthcare and access to more people is important, Amendment 69 is the wrong way to go about it.”
The second measure, Amendment T, deals with a provision in the Colorado Constitution that still allows for indentured servitude by convicted criminals; the term “slavery” is used in the provision. This is a referred amendment that was agreed on by both legislative chambers to be placed on the ballot. Colorado Catholic Conference is for Amendment T.
“The reason it got so much bipartisan support is there’s still a reference to slavery in terms of punishment for crimes that are committed in our constitution,” Kraska said. “The bishops feel that it is a wrong thing to still have in our Colorado constitution, so we’re asking people to vote to reclude that reference from our constitution permanently, therefore our position is to vote yes on Amendment T.”