Sunday, September 18, 2011

Give Voters More, Not Less Info

Give Voters More, Not Less Info
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
September 18, 2011

Edwin Clark of Warren made a good point about having all candidates listed on electoral ballots, even those running unopposed in his letter to the editor on Saturday, September 17.

Adding to Mr. Clark’s comments, unopposed candidates’ names should be listed on the ballot to give voters the opportunity to vote against that person with a write-in of their choice. Omitting unopposed candidates from the ballot gives a false sense of unanimous support.

While one party did not put forth a candidate for one reason or another, which is also a problem in the body politic, the voters still should have an opportunity to cast a ballot either for or against that unopposed candidate. By keeping the unopposed candidate on the ballot, that will serve as a reminder to the voters that he or she is a candidate for a given office and also a reminder that he or she is liked or disliked to the point that voters will offer a write-in choice of their own.

When the ballots are counted, should an unopposed candidate receive a low vote percentage that may encourage the opposition party to run a candidate in the next election cycle. By low, that could realistically be any number below 80 percent.

Any candidate seeking public office, whether opposed or unopposed, should have his or her name listed on the ballot for the consideration of the voters. To what costs was Rep. Kathy Richardson (R-Noblesville) referring? This law she authored as a bill should be repealed in the interest of giving the voters more information, not less.

Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN

[This item appeared in The Indianapolis Star.]

No comments:

Post a Comment