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Suffrage, Elections and Eligibility to Office

The following constitutional provisions were proposed by individual delegates or committees and after consideration by the Convention were rejected.


1. Referendum on Contested Elections. -Section -. All contested elections for senators and representatives of the General Assembly, and for all county and township officers, shall be sent back to the people for their decision, in a manner to be prescribed by law (p. 525). Laid on the table by a vote of 67-17.

2. Extension of Suffrage by Referendum Vote. - Sec. - . The legislature may, at any time hereafter, extend by law the right of suffrage to persons not herein enumerated; but no such law shall be in force until the same shall have been submitted to a vote of the people, at a general election, and approved by a majority of all the votes at such election (p. 525). Laid on the table.

3. Deprivation of Suffrage for Want of Documentary Proof. - Sec. - . No person entitled to vote, by the laws of this State, shall be barred from voting on account of having lost or mislaid any certificate showing his legal right to vote (p. 525). Rejected.

4. Referendum on Change of County Boundaries. - Sec. 4. No county with an area of four hundred square miles or less, shall be divided or have any part stricken therefrom, without submitting the question to a vote of the people of the county or counties to be affected by the change; nor shall the change be made unless a majority of the votes cast upon the question shall be in favor of the change, and in that case the legislature shall have power to make such change (p. 881). Rejected by a vote of 39-72.

5. Ineligibility of Persons to More Than One Office. - Sec. 5. All state and county officers elected under this Constitution, shall be ineligible to any other office in this State during the time for which they were elected, and all votes given for such person in office for any other office, in violation of the above provision shall be void (p. 881). Rejected by a vote of 39-71.

6. Election of Canal Trustees, State Prison Warden and State Printer. - Sec. 1. There shall be elected by the qualified voters a trustee on the part of the State for the Wabash and Erie Canal, (so long as there is any necessity for such an office), warden of the state's prison, and state printer, and shall hold their office for two years, and until their successors are elected and qualified: Provided, That no person shall be eligible to the office of trustee of the Wabash and Erie Canal, warden to the state's prison, or state printer, more than four years in any term of six years (p. 264). Reported by the Committee on State Officers on November 18. Engrossed for third reading without amendment (pp. 788-89). Laid on the table on third reading by a vote of 113-17 (pp. 797-98).

The following amendments were proposed: (1) To strike out all reference to the canal trustees. Rejected by a vote of 42-87. (2) To eliminate the warden of the state prison and the state printer. (3) The warden of the penitentiary shall be elected by the convicts on the joint stock principal, each convict being entitled to as many votes as the number of years of service to which he was sentenced (p. 789).

7. Excluding Officers of Banks and Corporations from Seats in General Assembly. - Sec. 34. No president, director, or other officer or agent of any railroad, bank, banking, or other moneyed incorporated company in this State, shall be eligible to an election to either branch of the General Assembly of this State so long as he shall be such president, director, or other officer, or agent, nor until the lapse of six months from the time at which he shall have ceased to be such president, director or other officer (p. 456). An attempt to lay this proposed section on the table was lost by a vote of 46-79. The section was then adopted by a vote of 70-57 and advanced to third reading, without amendment, by a vote of 67-57 (p. 456). Laid on the table by a vote of 79-47 (p. 465).

8. Ineligibility of Member of Constitutional Convention to Seats in congress. Nor shall any member of this Convention be eligible to a seat in Congress for the next five years after the adoption of the Constitution. (p. 456).

9. Ineligibility of Members of Constitutional Convention to Any Office Provided for in Constitution for Period of Five Years. - Provided, That no member of this convention shall be eligible to hold any office provided for in this Constitution until after the expiration of two years from the time of its adoption (p. 456). Rejected by a vote of 34-81.

10. Excluding Officers of Banks and Corporations from Seats in General Assembly. - Section. 36. No president, cashier, director, or other officer of any bank, banking, or other incorporated moneyed institution of this State, authorized or empowered by law to issue bills, notes, deal in bullion, coin, bills of exchange or promissory notes, shall be eligible to an election to the General Assembly during the time he holds such office, place or station, or acts as such officer. Adopted by a vote of 67-62 and engrossed for third reading by a vote of 66-62 (p. 466).

11. Holding More Than One Lucrative Office. Section 1. No person shall hold than one lucrative office at the same time, except as in this Constitution is expressly permitted: Provided, That counties casting less than one thousand votes may confer the offices of clerk, recorder, and auditor, or any two of said offices upon one person (p. 173). Reported by the committee on Tenure of Office on October 31. Laid on the table (p. 534).

12. Election of State Librarian. - Section 1. There shall be elected by the qualified voters of the State, a State Librarian, whose powers and duties shall be prescribed by law, and who shall hold his office two years, and until his successor be elected and qualified (p. 224). Reported by the Committee on State Officers on November 9.

13. Review of Election Contests by County Commissioners. - Section 1. The General Assembly shall provide by law for empowering boards of commissioners, in each county, to hear and determine all contested elections for the offices of members of the General Assembly, and for all county officers; and a mode by which appeals may be taken from the decisions of such boards to the circuit courts, and for empowering such boards and courts where justice cannot otherwise be done, to refer such contested elections back to the people (p. 797). Reported by the Committee on Elective Franchise on January 27. Laid on the table (p. 863).

14. Eligibility of Governor and Lieutenant-Governor to Office. - Sec. 26. Nothing in section second of this article shall be construed as to exclude a citizen of the United States or an elector in this State, who shall have attained the age of thirty years, from being eligible to the office of Governor or Lieutenant Governor (p. 550). Laid on the table.