Initiative & Referendum Institute
John G. Matsusaka is the president of the I&R Institute.
Wayne Pacelle, Senior Vice President of the Humane Society of the United States stated that, "the Initiative & Referendum Institute is the only independent voice for preserving and expanding the right of citizens to make laws directly through the initiative and referendum process. This vital tool of democracy is under siege by special interests, and the Initiative & Referendum Institute is a powerful and persuasive voice for the right of I&R."
Edwin Meese, III, former U.S. Attorney General under President Ronald Reagan, had this to say about the Institute, "[T]he Initiative & Referendum Institute performs a valuable service to the Nation by providing research and educational programs to protect and expand the democratic process of initiative and referendum by the people in the several states. Having this electoral ability is a critical ‘safety valve’ for effective citizenship."
Ballot initiative litigation
Over the years, the I&R Institute has played a leading role in filing lawsuits that challenge different aspects of laws in various states that the I&R Institute views as placing unconstitutional restrictions on initiative rights. Cases filed by the I&R Institute include:
- Initiative & Referendum Institute v. Herbert
- Initiative & Referendum Institute v. Ralph's
- Initiative & Referendum Institute v. Costco
- Initiative & Referendum Institute v. United States Postal Service
- Initiative & Referendum Institute v. Jaeger
The Initiative & Referendum Institute studies the initiative and referendum process and publishes papers and monographs addressing its effect on public policy, citizen participation and its reflection of trends in American thought and culture. Publications include a variety of books, conference papers and publications that enable a deeper understanding of the challenges and history of the I&R process.
The I&R Institute publishes Ballot Watch, which keeps readers abreast of developments in the world of ballot measures, and monographs on subjects such as its report on tobacco-related initiatives in 2006 and the spill-over impact of ballot initiatives into candidate races.
- I&R Institute website
- I&R Institute Guide to 2008 ballot measures
- I&R Institute Guide to 2007 ballot measures
- Library of I&R publications
- I&R conference papers on local I&R
- Major court cases, list compiled by I&R Institute.