Montana Supreme Court strikes down Marsy’s Law

By Whitney Bermes

The Montana Supreme Court struck down a law that added crime victims’ rights to the state’s constitution.

In a 5-2 ruling issued Wednesday, the state’s high court voided Constitutional Initiative 116, or Marsy’s Law, in its entirety, saying the changes it made should have been submitted to voters separately rather than as an all-encompassing initiative.

“When voters were required to vote ‘yes’ or ‘no’ for CI-116 in its entirety, they were forced to vote for or against multiple, not closely related, changes to the Montana Constitution with one vote,” wrote Justice Laurie McKinnon in the court’s opinion. “Voters had no way to express their opinions as to each proposed constitutional change.”

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