Friday, February 25, 2005

Election Reform...

...is a never ending topic in Washington and equally the blogosphere. Many of the articles and blog posts I have read ring more of sour grapes than civic concern. That is not to say that there are not some problems inherent to our voting system (namely Democrats...) Moveon.org is currently circulating emails to its 'members' --(my member name is 'Melinda') asking for signatures on a petition that promotes a bill ("The Count Every Vote Act") proposed by Hillary, Boxer, Tubbs and Kerry.

Reforms Democrats want:
Voting day to be National holiday (which I think is insulting...get your ass to the polls, people have been doing it since voting started and they had to walk 4 miles in 12 inches of snow...uphill...with no coats...)
Felons to vote (Mayor Street of Philadelphia accomplishes this without a new law)
Citizens can register and vote on Election Day (talk about Election Day corruption and confusion...once again, if you want to vote register NOW --I registered to vote when I was 17 and had the GOP rep hold the registration until my birthday...can we say dork?)
Paper ballots for every vote cast at an electronic voting machine

Reforms Republicans want:
In Iraqi fashion --permanent ink on the fingers of voters that have already exercised their right... (See! They are on to you, Mayor Street!)
Present Government issue photo at polling place (seems fair to me...you need ID to do anything else 'official')
You must be alive to vote (That wasn't really on there, but it should be...)

For me, the most glaring blunder in our system is the Primaries. Wagering that most Dems would agree after Iowa and New Hampshire bestowed them with John Kerry. No offense, but two fairly insignificant states get to set the precedent for the rest of the country on whom the nominee will be. This promotes the 'group think' phenomenon that took John Forbes Kerry from a dead campaign to the front runner. The primaries should ALL be held on the same day. Then people can really vote what they believe instead of calculating who has the best chance to win...or what other states did.

One of my brothers is dead set on a run-off election. This is where you would number your choices and if your first choice didn't make it your vote would go to the second on your list and so on. Definitely the brain-child of the MTV generation... I say, make your choice and stand by it...

With the birth of Moveon.org and all the other 527s of its ilk, the 2004 election proved what a miserable failure McCain/Feingold was... Are there any reforms that could be instituted that wouldn't just be circumvented to create a worse election scenario? Is this push just sour grapes from the left --or do we need election reform?

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