Our Editorials

Editorial: Improve Turnout By Making Voting Worthwhile

It seems that turnout is the holy grail of elections. Many election reforms are justified on a claim, true or not, that the reform will increase turnout. But, turnout is more a symptom of democracy, than an end in itself.

We have some suggestions to consider:

  • Make it easier for third-party candidates to get on the ballot, easier to qualify for public financing. Let us start with a level playing field for public financing, and officials that follow the law, with a “Chief Election Official” with actual responsibility for elections.
  • Reform the decentralized partisan election system.
  • Eliminate the “Spoiler” effect, provide more democracy, with a true runoff election when one candidate does not get 50_% of the vote.

Let us recall that in this generation, two third-party “spoilers” did win elections in Connecticut: Governor Lowell Weicker, and Senator Joe Lieberman.

Common Sense: [How] Do you know if your vote counted?

The Citizen Audit has just opened up our signup for the audits for the primary, which start fifteen days after the primary. The primary is August 12th, so the audits will begin Aug 27th.

Q: So, why bother signing to spend a day observing the audits?
A: To understand and the question ” [How] Do you know if your vote counted?”

Common Sense: The good, bad, and ugly secret ballot

We often take for granted the idea of the secret ballot. One alternative to the secret vote is the public vote. Sometimes we would prefer a public vote, sometimes it is necessary,

The Connecticut Constitution gives us the right to the secret vote. In considering the Constitutional Amendment this year, we note that it represents a third alternative: A semi-secret vote, if anything a worse alternative than either a secret vote or a public vote with the disadvantages of each

Election Day Registration: Be prepared for lines and dissapointment

Insanity:
1) doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
– Albert Einstein
2) doing something different from what has been done over and over and expecting the same result. – The Land of [un]Steady Habits

Maybe not this year, but sometime soon, in a high interest election, we will have a huge turn-out for Election Day Registration, and many voters and candidates disappointed at 8:00pm.

Hartford: Democracy is worth voting NO on question 3. Don’t be misled.

We do not use the word “misleading” lightly. We have three problems with the latest Couranrt Editorial, in addition to the other issues we have been articulating over the the the years. As we have said many times, we have a concern, a criticism, and an alternative proposal.

No system is perfect. Let us remember, the problems come when there is a close highly contested election, where the checks and balances are critical –That is why Hartford voters should not tolerate this change.

Elections are critical. Do not vote for a single appointed registrar.

Common Sense: Public Transparency and Verifiability

In our last post in this series, Why Should Audits Be Independent, we ended with “When it comes to elections, are independent audits sufficient? Not really. We need public transparency and verifiability as well.” In this post, we will address transparency and verifiability.

Common Sense: Why should audits be Independent?

Why do  we need independent audits for elections just as we have for other business and government functions?

Military Justice, the NSA, and Independent Election Audits

Recently there were highly publicized hearings in Washington, D.C. on the subject of rape of sexual harassment in the U.S. Military and the military’s failure to make progress in reducing incidents and induce individuals to actually report crimes. One aspect of that is the fact that commanding officers have the responsibility/authority to reduce charges or even pardon the alleged or convicted perpetrators.

OP-ED: Voting Requires Vigilance. Popular Isn’t Always Prudent

Our Op-Ed published yesterday by CTNewsJunkie, outlining the integrity risks of the National Popular Vote Compact, now being considered by the Connecticut Legislature, for the fourth time since 2007.

Bold Steps Beyond Integrity To Improve U.S. Elections

We complete our post-election series with some steps to improve elections beyond election administration and integrity: Campaign finance reform, media reform, and restoring the rule of law.

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