write legislation

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DesI was surprised to learn...

...that in many cases, at the state level, it is not lawyers and legislators who write the laws. It is often the people who want the new laws who write the laws.

I am currently working on four bills, both new and modified, along with a small group of associates from around the state. We have spent months researching, debating, and writing. We have nearly completed the wording, which is majorly time-consuming, because every word has to be just right. Loopholes have to be taken out, or put in, depending on the intent. Words and phrases have to be carefully chosen so as not to inflame or raise red flags with certain groups. Potentially concessions have to be built in, so that when it comes time to negotiate, you have something to give, without giving the essential items. And so on.

We have conducted focus groups and feedback sessions to ensure that we have high quality, defensible bills which will hopefully experience minimum controversy. We are now moving ahead with securing support from individual legislators. The next few weeks will be full of meetings. Fortunately I don’t have to attend all of them – only the ones where I am the person in our group who knows the legislators personally. After that, we will be lobbying and testifying on behalf of our bills, providing we are successful in getting them sponsored and introduced. I have high hopes for some of them, moderate hopes for another, and sort of low hopes for one of them. Very often bills will fail, which means you go back to the drawing board, revise, and try again next session. It will be a long wait to find out how they all do in the end. It’s kind of like cheering for a sports team, I guess!

I’ve learned a lot, not only about legalese and politics, but also about working with people, the intricacies of government, and the power that each individual truly has (when empowered) to make a difference in their world. Each and every one of YOU could do it, if you wanted to. You just need to have passion, dedication, persistence, and courage. 6 years ago

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