Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Political Ethics, Closed Primaries, Transparency: Include Independents!


INDEPENDENT VOTERS
Number of independent voters skyrockets (October 18, 2012, By: Mark Wachtler, Examiner.com) One group promising that those days are over is the newly formed Independent Voters Association. Based out of Chicago, but slowly expanding nationally, the IVA pledges to be that ready-made army of political precinct workers and volunteers for independent and third party candidates.

OPEN PRIMARIES
  • Richard Davis: One-party rule naturally leads to ethics abuses (By Richard Davis, For the Deseret News) This arrogance also is demonstrated in legislative decisions made in closed legislative party caucuses, ever stricter limits on the ability to put citizen-based initiatives on the ballot and closed primaries that exclude most voters.
  • Kansas Democrats vote to limit primaries - Closes primaries to registered Democrats (Topeka Capital Journal) The move reverses the party’s prior primary-ballot rule that allowed unaffiliated voters to cast ballots to pick Democratic candidates to advance to the general election.
  • Teplitz wants caucus for more transparency in Pa. (By CHRISTINA KAUFFMAN, York Dispatch.com) Initiatives include lobbying reform, suspension of pay for the governor and legislators if they don't pass a timely budget and opening the state's closed primary to independent voters.
  • Save money, make the system fairer (By Joe Ferraro, Philadelphia Inquirer) Plan No. 3: Go to an open primary system. That means anyone, including independents, can vote for anyone they want in the primary, regardless of a candidate's party. This idea may not save money, but it would make the system fairer. And, if adopted, it would likely negate Plans Nos. 1 and 2. The county couldn't close polling places because there would likely be more voters, and the political parties couldn't be charged for their exclusive primary election process.
  • American political system is rotten to the core (By Jeff McLean, Seacoastonline.com) In addition, implementing term limits and reducing the number of closed primary states would serve to combat the current role of gerrymandering and money in politics.
  • Guest column: Proposed Democratic election reforms don't go far enough (By Keith Allard, Michigan Live) • End taxpayer-paid primaries. If the two parties wish to play games with the system they have created, the taxpayers should not be liable for the expensive cost of these elections. Allow parties to pay for their own selection process, whether it is a caucus or closed primary.

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