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Senator HRUSKA. No, my reference was to a Federal constitutional convention.
Justice CaldwELL. No, no; I think that is impractical. I do not think it would be possible, as a practical matter.
Senator HRUSKA. When you said you prefer a constitutional convention, you did not have in mind at that time a Federal constitutional convention?
Justice CALDWELL. No, no; under the machinery provided by the Constitution, I think it is utterly impractical. I do not believe you can go that route.
Senator Hrtska. My question had to do with the resolutions of the States, I think some 22 in number, who are calling for a constitutional convention to amend the Constitution. As between that method and the method of submitting a proposed amendment to the Constitution for the legislatures to adopt, which would you prefer!
Justice CALDWELL. It must go to the legislatures.
Now, in the original contemplation of this question of constitutional amendments, I am afraid the Founding Fathers did not go very far and look into the practical aspects of the calling of the Constitutional Convention. The reason the States petitioned for the calling of a Federal constitutional convention is because they had no choice. They do not want that. They are simply taking that route as the only route open to them under the Constitution as it is written now, in the hopes that the Congress will see that it would be impractical and that the Congress would, of its own motion, then submit the amendment to the legislatures of the States.
I do not think for a moment that you could set up a constitutional convention that would do the job at the Federal level.
Senator HRUSKA. It has never been tried, has it?
Justice CALDWELL. No; it has not been tried and I would certainly be fearful of the consequences if it were tried.
Senator HRUSKA. Is there an initiative and referendum law in Florida?
Justice CALDWELL. No, sir; we do not have one.
Senator HRUSKA. Of course, if this resolution becomes a Federal constitutional amendment, there would be the necessity for a vote of the people on any plan that would base one house on factors other than population. It would be necessary for the plan to provide machinery so that the people could vote on that measure?
Justice CALDWELL. Yes.
Senator HRUSKA. The lack of a referendum law in a State is not serious in this regard. It is a deficiency that can readily be corrected.
Justice CALDWELL. That would be no obstacle at all in Florida.
Senator Bays. Justice and Senator, we are very grateful that you have taken the time to help compile the record before the subcommittee.
Senator HOLLAND. Thank you, very much.
Our next witness is Mr. Hale Champion, who is before us to present the views of Governor Brown and I trust will feel free to let us have any thoughts that he might have on the subject as the director of finance of the State of California.
STATEMENT OF HALE CHAMPION, CALIFORNIA STATE DIRECTOR
OF FINANCE, FOR EDMUND G. BROWN, GOVERNOR OF CALI-
Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee, I appreciate the courtesy of your subcommittee to Gov. Edmund G. Brown of California in permitting me to appear here today on relatively short notice as his official representative. What I am about to read is his own statement on the subject of a constitutional amendment to provide for and control apportionment of State legislatures. This is the Governor's statement:
As Governor of California, which, as the most populous State, has almost 10 percent of the Nation's total population, I have special reason to appeal to you today.
California, just as each of the other 49 States, is unique and has unique problems. But because California is the largest of these unique units, its unique problems are larger. And since size inevitably results in complexity, those larger problems are extraordinarily complex. We are additionally confronted by a rate and constancy of immigration unmatched in human history, a growth that feeds and nourishes these complex problems.
When we come, as we have today, to one of the most difficult of these problems, legislative apportionment, we have still another factor with which to contend. The great range and variety of California's geography and the uneven, and often expensive mismatching of population and resources. Almost everything we need we have, but what is needed in the south is often available only in the north ; what is required to build great coastal cities must come from the sparsely settled mountains, and even the deserts must slowly be converted into fertile valleys to provide enough food and fiber for all the other areas of California.
I do not intend to discuss all this in detail here today. I know that non-Californians are perhaps understandably less concerned about our great splendors and our lesser miseries than we ourselves. I have repeated these generalizations only because I think they are a necessary background for those who would like to understand how most Californians feel about the matter now before you.
What I have to say about apportionment is remarkably close to what Senator Kuchel has already told you, and I think that fact is significant. I am a Democrat, be is a Republican. In this instance, I believe we represent a great and stillgrowing consensus in California on what should be done as a result of the U.S. Supreme Court rulings on apportionment of State legislatures.
My recommendations are not all embodied in the proposed constitutional amendment you are now considering, but they could easily be fitted into that measure or any of a number of others. As Senator Kuchel did, I offer ways in which to make that measure acceptable-indeed highly desirable-to Californians.
My recommendations are three in number, and I would stress that each bears with sufficient weight on the two others that, in my judgment they are not separable.
First, I would endorse the principle that each State be given a qualified right under a constitutional amendment to apportion one of two houses of its legislature without fully meeting the one-man-one-vote test now established by recent ralings of the U.S. Supreme Court.
Second, I would insist that one of the restrictive qualifications be that the people of each of the 50 States be given the opportunity long denied in many of the States to pass directly on questions of apportionment by initiative and referendum--an opportunity which Californians have both had and exercised on a number of occasions. That right should be reserved to the people of each State by the Federal Constitution as a condition precedent to apportionment of one of the two houses of any State without full adherence to the one-man-one-vote rule.
Third, I would also restrict the use of this new constitutional privilege to States which could meet stringent requirements embodied in the same constitutional amendment requirements which would guarantee that the electorate of the State concerned was not limited by reason of sex, race, creed, color, economic status, or other comparably irrelevant factors.
I cannot tell you that I have exact language or procedures devised to carry out this three-point recommendation. I can tell you, however, that California could qualify immediately so far as the spirit and intent are concerned. I am sure many other States could also qualify and there is no reason why those States who would not immediately be eligible for this privilege could not be come so in a reasonable time.
California urgently needs this kind of amendment, and I believe many other States would welcome it. I see no valid reason for stubborn opposition to returning this question of legislative apportionment at a State level to the people of the several States, so long as we can guarantee that all those who qualify as voters under Federal standards can freely participate in making the decision. I would join in objections to measures which did not offer such a guarantee to the full electorate, but I see no valid reason why such guarantees should not be offered.
I do not believe that all States should or would choose to apportion one house on other than a strict one-man-one-vote rule. In many States, I think I might. as an individual, choose to vote against differences between the two houses so far as representing population is concerned. But I think no one anywhere should protest a properly qualified right of the citizens of any State to make their own free decision in that matter.
So far as the ultimate decision in California under such an amendment is concerned, I believe I would support a reasonable modification of the one-manone-vote rule in the election of the State senate.
That belief is based on the past and the present, but it also has the future in mind.
Senator Bayu. We are grateful to you, Mr. Champion, and to your Governor for expressing interest.
Would you take a moment or two to relate one or two things to us and allow yourself to be subjected to questioning?
Mr. CHAMPIOX. I would be glad to do so. I might add that Senator Rattigan, who is to follow me, was a member of that reapportionment committee and probably has a good deal more detailed data referring to that commission.
However, I shall be glad to answer any questions.
I would like to ask one question concerning one of the three points, the second one, referring to initiative and referendum. As I read the statement, the Governor is suggesting that we make this mandatory.
Mr. CHAMPIOX. Well, at least that they should be available.
Senator Barh. Given the opportunity—I would not say that is mandatory, but that this would apply to all things, not just the reapportionment, the way I read it. Is that the intention?
Mr. CHAMPION. No, Senator--we are not advising that you should tell all States that they should have initiative and referendum on all subjects. We think, howerer, they should be available on the subject of reapportionment.
Senator Barn. I see I did not read it as carefully as I should have. This is a question that has been before the committee several times and it is good to get your thoughts because as you pointed out, some of the States do not hare this and some of the States are concerned that, if a constitutional amendment is adopted, we not get ourselves into a situation where a system is bound into a State legislative branch. one of the houses, which cannot be removed.
I will wait and ask these questions of the other member of your legislature here.
Mr. (HAMPION. Fine. I might add that on that question in California, because of the growth problem, and this was brought out in
some of your earlier testimony, having available these at any time rather than having merely a fixed period of time would seem to me to be important, not only in California but in many States which have erratic growth patterns or other patterns which might lead to the desirability of making such an opportunity available between a fixed period of review and apportionment.
Senator Bays. You would limit it to every 10 years, then?
Mr. CHAMPION. I would not limit it to every 10 years. This would be available at any time that growth had changed situations. This would be available then to the people.
Senator Bays. If you made it available at any time, from the experience you have had with initiative and referendum in California, would this get to the point where we would have annoyance referendum petitions ?
Mr. CHAMPION. Depending upon your point of view, California does have some annoyance problems in this regard. We have a very large number of initiatives and referendums on many subjects, but I think the conclusion has always been that the opportunity to use this is more important than the difficulty we sometimes have in dealing with the problems that it poses. That would be true, I think, in the case of reapportionment.
We have had, I think, four elections on the subject of the State senate since it was established in its present form.
Senator Bayh. I was thinking, not so much of annoyance of different referrendum questions, which is a matter of everyone's interpretation, but rather the repetition, the frequency with which one question could be posed; in other words, if there were not some time limit, then perhaps the same question would be presented over and over again on the reapportionment matter.
Mr. CHAMPION. I understand that, and yet I think probably there is an educational process involved in that the repetitious approach has value, too, so I do not think it would be desirable to deny it.
Senator TYDINGS. Mr. Champion, I note on page 2 you have a list of recommendations in connection with Governor Brown supporting this amendment; on the third one, he states
I would also restrict the use of this new constitutional privilege to States which could meet stringent requirements embodied in the same constitutional amendment requirements which would guarantee that the electorate of the State concerned was not limited by reason of sex, race, creed, color, economic status or other comparably irrelevant factors.
By this would you mean that you would want the right of judicial review?
Mr. CHAMPION. I think almost certainly. I know of no other way for adequate protection.
Senator Tydings. Let me ask you this: If there were no provision, and if the debate clearly indicated that judicial review was not desired as far as the factors in reapportionment for one house were concerned, would that make a difference in Governor Brown's position?
Mr. CHAMPION. I think Governor Brown's position there is quite explicit. Earlier in the testimony, you may note that he said
My recommendations are three in number and I would stress that each bears with sufficient weight on the two others. In my judgment, they are not separate. Senator TYDINGS. Right.
Let me ask you, Senator Bayh questioned you about the statement that the 50 States be given the opportunity to pass directly on questions of apportionment by initiative and referendum. Do I gather that the same thing holds true there, that Governor Brown considers this sufficiently important that any provision must contain an opportunity for the people to initiate as well as to pass on the reapportionment hy referendum ?
Mr. CHAMPION. That is correct.
Senator Hruska. Mr. Champion, I want to say that it is good to have you here to represent your great Governor. Will you please convey to him our compliments and best regards?
Mr. CHAMPION. I shall certainly do so.
Senator HRUSKA. Tell him we missed seeing him here, but he has been represented well by the delegate who came in his place.
I am especially gratified by the portion of the statement and the spirit which inheres throughout the Governor's statement which relies upon the ultimate source of authority. Certainly, the statement of Governor Brown will be interpreted by me as being one which considers legislative apportionment to be a fundamental problem and in that area where the voice of the people should be heard.
I should like to ask the witness, have you any personal observations that you would like to venture on this subject! You have testified as to what the Governor has stated. Have you any personal views or additional views which you would like to express at this time.
Mr. CHAMPION. Perhaps by great coincidence, being an appointee of the Governor, my views resemble his very strongly. That would, however, be the case did that relationship not exist.
Senator BAYH. The record will note that coincidence.
Mr. CHAMPION. I feel that this is a problem in the State of California which I think Senator Rattigan will discuss in great detail. We do have geographical problems, including physical barrier problems. We have problems of the community of economic interests. I think those perhaps are the two greatest and I think we do need to pay some attention to those factors.
Senator Hruska. From your observation, is there great public interest in this issue in your State?
Mr. CHAMPION. I think the statement, again, of the Governor is an accurate one. It is of great interest, which is substantially growing. I think that as these discussions go on, there is every day considerably more interest in this problem.
Senator HRUSKA. As the importance of this decision and as its ultimate impact is becoming more fully recognized by the people, it tends to grow, is that true!
Mr. CHAMPION. Yes, I think so. The legislature is under an edict by Federal court as of July 1 to have enacted a new plan of apportionment for the State senate. As the legislature wrestles with that problem, the people involved in each of the areas in the State recognize more clearly every day what interests they have at stake.
Senator Baył. Will the Senator yield just a moment, please? Senator HRUSKA. Surely.