2008 Initiative Petitions
Approved for Circulation in Missouri

Constitutional Amendment to Article VIII, Section 3, Pertaining to Paper Ballots, 2008-011


Be it resolved by the people of the State of Missouri that the Constitution be amended:

Section 3, article VIII, Constitution of Missouri, is repealed and one new section adopted in lieu thereof, to be known as section 3, to read as follows:

(1)  All elections by the people shall be by hand-marked paper ballot or by paper ballot marked by any mechanical method prescribed by law.  All election officers shall be sworn or affirmed not to disclose how any voter voted; provided, that in cases of contested elections, grand jury investigations and in the trial of all civil or criminal cases in which the violation of any law relating to elections, including nominating elections, is under investigation or at issue, such officers may be required to testify and the ballots cast may be opened, examined, counted, and received as evidence.

(2)  This subsection, and the immediately following subsections, shall be known and may be cited as the "Show Me The Vote Law". Notwithstanding any provision of subsection 1 of this section or any other law to the contrary, all elections conducted in this state after January 1, 2009, shall be conducted using hand-marked and serially numbered ballots to identify the precinct in which the ballots are to be cast. Precincts shall be no larger than 600 registered voters. All ballots for each precinct shall bear a serially-marked number which will distinguish such ballots from all other precincts. The number of ballots printed for each precinct shall not exceed 160% of the number of registered voters in that precinct.

(3)  All ballots available at the precinct, from the start of voting until voting ceases, shall remain at all times on a table within public view. Voters shall select a blank ballot and shall mark said ballot in the privacy of a voting booth and then cast the ballot into a transparent locked ballot box visible to the public. The transparent ballot box shall be in full and unimpeded view of the public, and other interested parties, from the commencement of voting until all ballots are tallied. Each election precinct shall tally all serially marked ballots, including all absentee, unused, or spoiled ballots, and shall publicly post totals of all categories of ballots at the precinct premises prior to removal of such ballots.

(4)  All absentee ballots shall be mailed to the proper precinct, but held by the United States Post Office until election day, to be then deposited by the delivering United States Postal Service employee into the locked transparent ballot box prior to the poll closing. After the polling station closes, the absentee ballots will be then counted with all other cast ballots.

(5)  All ballots shall be retained permanently. The local election authority shall make available to any interested parties, within ten working days of a written request, all original ballots for inspection and for duplication purposes