Oregon’s initiative process allows the people to enact laws directly when the Legislature cannot or will not do so. On Tuesday, the Senate voted to change Ballot Measure 11 to be more lenient toward juvenile offenders 25 years after voters passed it. It was the right thing to do.
Senate Bill 1008 — actually a combination of five bills — squeaked through with the required two-thirds majority (more on that later). Three Republicans, including Sen. Dennis Linthicum of Klamath Falls, joined 17 Democrats in voting yes.