Concerned with two partisan registrars? Be careful what you ask for.

How to manage and judge our elections without partisan bias is tough. Occasionally Secretary’s of State act in blatantly partisan ways. Cases in recent history include Catherine Harris in Florida and Ken Blackwell in Ohio.

Here in Connecticut the Secretary of the State proposed turning elections over to a single unelected official in each town, rather than the current two elected registrars of opposing parties. Later that bill was changed dramatically – watered down, yet still increasing the Secretary’s powers in several ways, including temporarily suspending registrars.  We are skeptical of a single unelected official in each of our 169 towns would actually be non-partisan.  We would rather see regionalization with professional administration because it would be more professional, and less likely to be partisan. We are also skeptical of a single elected official being able to suspend other elected officials.

Bi-partisan management/judgement does not always work.  It seems to work better in Connecticut towns than it does Nationally. Take the Federal Elections Commission – please! A recent article in the Hill:   Partisanship stalemates FEC, says report <read>

Meanwhile in Kansas a bill would give the Secretary of State the power to prosecute election fraud.  How one feels about that bill may depend on one’s political opinion of the sitting Secretary and one’s opinion of election fraud.  Similarly one may lean for or against the Connecticut Secretary being able to remove registrars based on the current Secretary.

We suggest caution in Connecticut and in Kansas.

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