A couple of interesting letters appeared in the Scottsdale Republic today. As ScottsdaleTrails readers know, I’ve long advocated against disenfranchising voters who are not affiliated with one of the major political parties.
I disagree strongly with state legislation and policies that have been implemented to accomplish that disenfranchisement, including the forced shifting of municipal elections from spring to fall (which generates more turnout of party loyalists who typically don’t have a clue about local issues); preempting local sign ordinances (which creates advantage for incumbents and those with money for signs); and forcing non-affiliated early-voters to make special requests for non-partisan city ballots in spite of having already made a request via the permanent early voting list to receive early ballots.
These mechanisms and others like them which were put in place by so-called Republican legislators (and a lot of other so-called Republicans who stood by and let it happen), and they have ensured the continued political careers of people like Michelle Ugenti and John Kavanagh.
So, on to the letters:
Independent voters face hurdles at polling places
I am an independent voter. I went to my local poll on Aug. 26 to vote only for the Scottsdale City Council seats.
I was first told I could not vote for the council because I needed to declare myself other than an independent. After a wait of 10 minutes, I was given a provisional ballot and told to put it in a special red box.
It’s already a loss for our freedom to vote when we as independents who think for ourselves cannot vote in the primary but are told we must declare (a party) to vote for City Council. Are the Republicans and Democrats that worried about free-thinking people or are they trying only to hold on to a base that is getting smaller each year?
I think it’s time every voter should be able to vote in every election.
— Lee Stevens
What was real message in City Council primary?
Your article, “6 council hopefuls head to November runoff,” states “none of the candidates received enough votes to win outright in the primary.” Yet candidate Jennifer Petersen says, “Scottsdale voters sent a clear message in Tuesday’s election.” Is this indicative of how unclear Petersen is? If there were a clear message, someone would have won outright in the primary.
Here is the clear message I get: Candidates who benefit from “dark money” and support businesses over constituent needs seem to have more money to spend to spread their propaganda. I hope Scottsdale residents will look deep in their hearts, listen to everyone, even those who don’t have full coffers, and make an informed decision.
— Linda Mack Ross
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