54th legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - first session, 2019


William E. Sharer









     WHEREAS, it is fabled that the Locrains, a people from a city-state in the central part of ancient Greece, had an interesting method of keeping legislative bill introduction within reasonable bounds; and

     WHEREAS, the rule was simple; and

     WHEREAS, to propose a new law, or propose to change an old law, one had to argue the matter before the council of one thousand, with a rope around one's neck; and

     WHEREAS, if the council voted against the bill or proposed changes, the unfortunate soul who presented the proposal was choked to death on the spot; and

     WHEREAS, in Athens during this same time, within one year of a bill introduction, the person who introduced a bill was subject to indictment for unconstitutional legislation; and

     WHEREAS, at the trial, the person's life could be declared forfeited if the person was unsuccessful in defending both the merits of the proposal and the procedure followed in securing its introduction and passage; and

     WHEREAS, needless to say, in both of these city-states, the quality of legislation introduced was very high and the quantity was very low; and

     WHEREAS, placing those kinds of restrictions on the New Mexico legislature might be overkill, so to speak; and

     WHEREAS, on the other hand, consider that during the thirty-day session of the 2018 regular session, nine hundred sixteen individual bills, resolutions and memorials were introduced, and fifty-four committee and floor substitutes were submitted; and

     WHEREAS, the proliferation of bills, resolutions, memorials and committee and floor substitutes introduced each session is mind-boggling; and

     WHEREAS, then again, modern legislative sessions might make one long for, and appreciate, those good old, old, old days;

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO that legislators be requested to contemplate the proliferation of their handiwork and that nostalgia be expressed for the good old, old, old days; and

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that copies of this memorial be transmitted to the president pro tempore of the senate, the speaker of the house of representatives and the governing bodies of Locrains and Athens.

- 3 -