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Can petitions actually help change laws?

  1. peeples profile image94
    peeplesposted 5 years ago

    Can petitions actually help change laws?

    If a certain amount of a state all sign a petition can it be used to help create new laws or change existing laws?

  2. fpherj48 profile image75
    fpherj48posted 5 years ago

    peeples....You always ask such impressive questions.  Your curiosity is beneficial to all of us.
    "Petitions".....basically, 1.) Make a Public Statement...2) Express a Concern or Make a Request...3.) Get a large group of people noticed.  4.) Perk up some eyes and ears in the Ivory Towers.  5.) Have the power to "kick off a movement"
    6.)Garner the attention we desire.
    I'm sure there is more that can be attributed to "Petitions"......but the reality is, although they don't instantly nor automatically  have the power to create and/or change existing laws.....They ARE a very excellent start in the long, difficult process.

  3. chef-de-jour profile image96
    chef-de-jourposted 5 years ago

    It depends on the political system of your country, and the governmental processes that determine whether or not an idea becomes, eventually, a law. Petitions are an excellent way of gathering public opinion and support for the introduction of a new law or reform of those deemed out of date.
    In the UK a new form of petition was introduced online - e-petition - which basically allows for that petition to be read out and debated in parliament if a threshold number of 100,000 names is reached. So in theory if I wanted to bring in a new law against people who wear ten gallon hats on Sundays I could get an initial airing in the House of Commons because 100,000 other people agreed with me!

    That would be a start. The law itself might not never get beyond this first stage but at least the petition would have helped raise the issue. I think they are worth it because they reflect people's opinions, build momentum for a cause or change, and give politicians something serious to think about in between massaging their egos and photo opportunities.

  4. MizBejabbers profile image90
    MizBejabbersposted 5 years ago

    Yes, they can, but in our state sometimes even a petition for an initiated act takes several tries if the powers-that-be don't want to see the act on the ballot. Our state's Attorney General (no matter who the person is at the time) just keeps ruling the ballot title invalid on a technicality. The best way to get a state act passed is to lobby your legislator. Now there are many organizations that solicitate e-petitions to submit to Congress. Change.org is one of them. They claim to have had sucess with some of them. I occasionally sign their petitions if I agree with them.