Pennsylvania Amendment 2, Rules Governing Child Witnesses in Criminal Proceedings (2003)

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Pennsylvania Constitution
Seal of Pennsylvania.svg.png
Preamble
Articles
IIIIIIIVVVIVIIVIIIIXXXISchedule 1Schedule 2
Pennsylvania Amendment 2, also known as the act Authorizing the General Assembly to Enact Laws Regarding the Way that Children May Testify in Criminal Proceedings, was on the November 4, 2003 election ballot in Pennsylvania as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment, where it was approved.

The question asked on the ballot was ""Shall the Pennsylvania constitution be amended to provide that the general assembly may enact laws regarding the manner by which children may testify in criminal proceedings, including the use of videotaped depositions or testimony by closed-circuit television?"

Election results

Amendment 2
ResultVotesPercentage
Approveda Yes 1,494,261 80.6%
No360,28319.4%

Explanation

The Pennsylvania Attorney General provided an explanation of Amendment 1 which said:

This ballot question proposes to amend the Pennsylvania Constitution to give the Pennsylvania General Assembly authority to enact laws regarding the way that children may testify in criminal proceedings, including the use of videotaped depositions or testimony by closed-circuit television.

The Pennsylvania Constitution gives the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, and only the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, authority to make rules governing practice and procedure in the Pennsylvania courts. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled that the General Assembly cannot enact laws regarding the way that children may testify in criminal proceedings in the Pennsylvania courts.

The purpose of this ballot question is to give the General Assembly authority to make laws regarding the way that children may testify in criminal proceedings, including the use of videotaped depositions or closed-circuit television. The purpose of permitting children to testify by such means is to allow them to testify outside the physical presence of the accused.

This ballot question is limited in that it would not change the authority of the General Assembly to make laws regarding practice and procedure in the Pennsylvania courts other than to give the General Assembly authority to make laws regarding the way that children may testify in criminal proceedings.

The effect of this ballot question would be to enable the General Assembly to make laws regarding the way that children may testify in criminal proceedings.

See also

External links