Principles of Evaluation

When considering Free Markets and Private Property Rights we will consider questions such as:

  • Does this restrict or enhance the ability of individuals to enter into contracts or freely associate with one another?
  • Does the bill protect an individual’s property from theft, loss, or confiscation?
  • Does this restrict Missouri citizens’ right to use their property or reduce its value?
  • Does this replace voluntary market transactions with government coercion?
  • Does this increase or decrease regulation of or interfere with market transactions?
  • Does the bill grant or eliminate special privileges through monopoly or coercion?
  • Does the bill allow government to compete with private business or allow private business to compete with government?
  • Does the bill protect or harm an individual’s ability to make a living?
  • Does this provide, increase, or decrease subsidies for private companies or individuals?
  • In what ways does this enable or impair transactions in a friendly environment?

When considering Individual Liberty and Personal Responsibility we will consider questions such as:

  • Is the proposed legislation the least restrictive way to address the problem while protecting individual liberty?
  • Does this result in any socialized costs/benefits? Any harmful unintended consequences? If so, what are they?
  • Could existing law already deal with the problem?
  • Is government decision making, control, and enforcement placed at the lowest level that reasonably balances local input with preservation of liberty?
  • Do those who voluntarily use the service pay for it?
  • Does the bill promote or harm self-responsibility and self-sufficiency?
  • Does the bill create a protected class or provide the equal protection to all?
  • Does the bill protect parental rights relating to responsibility for their children?
  • If a behavior is banned or discouraged, is there clear and convincing evidence that there is an essential state purpose.

When considering Limited Government we will consider such questions as:

  • Does this address a legitimate role of government within the framework of Missouri or U.S. Constitution?
  • Does this create or eliminate an entitlement (in theory or practice)?
  • How does this impact governmental transparency?
  • Are public funds truly needed to address this issue, or can the private sector address the need, perhaps if restrictions on property rights or free enterprise were lifted?
  • Does this increase or decrease revenue to or spending by the government?
  • Will the proposal increase or decrease public debt?
  • Is the taxing structure visible, broad-based, and low?
  • Does this create dedicated revenue accounts in government that restrict the use of funds?
  • Does the bill promote or undermine constitutional rights guaranteed by the U.S. or the Missouri Constitutions?
  • What decision is being made, who gets to make the decision and who bears the consequences of the decision?

Return to Floor Reports