Editorial

Little time to file, little time to run for special primary election Nov. 3

ACHTUNG: This is not a “fair and balanced story. It is an editorial by the editor.

“If voting made a difference, they wouldn’t let you do it.” — Mark Twain

Perhaps it does make a diffeVoter-Suppression1-419x256rence, which might explain why our state and federal governments have been doing their damndest lately to reduce the numbers eligible to vote and how often.

I’ve long believed voting is one of our most sacred rights because it’s our only chance to change things if we don’t like the way things have been going. It is one of the most important cornerstones of freedom.

But “they” have been on a rampage of late, insisting on photo voter ID, even though the incidence of fraud is very low. I already hear the Chicago stories from 50 years ago, but I counter them with the tainted Florida election of 2000.

“They” in Michigan also have reduced the number of times we can vote in even-numbered years to just three times, and none in odd-numbered years, unless “they” deem it necessary.

To be sure, we’ll have four such occasions in 2016 because of the addition of the presidential primary.

But limiting when we can vote has a cost, such as what surfaced only days ago with the announcement of a special primary election Nov. 3 to fill the seat no longer occupied by the dearly departed Cindy Gamrat. Anyone interested in running for the seat has had only one week to decide because the deadline for filing is 4 p.m. Friday.

It’s almost as impossible for a potential candidate to gather the necessary 200 signatures in less than a week as it is for a Democrat to win this open seat. That means anyone interested must file a $100 fee before Friday afternoon.

The vacant 80th District seat represents all of Allegan County except Leighton, Wayland and Dorr townships and the City of Wayland.

Mary Whiteford, who was second to Gamrat in the August 2014 primary, wasted no time in announcing her candidacy and Joe Storey since then has indicated his interest. We’re lucky to have two people at the ready to run on such short notice. We may not see any Democrats on the ballot as a result.

Lt. Gov. Brian Calley, I am certain, chose Nov. 3 for the primary date because the general election cannot occur until March, the presidential primary. But anybody who knows anything about West Michigan politics knows the winner of the GOP primary only about six weeks away will be our next state representative. Not much time to mount an effective campaign and not much time for candidates to file.

Michigan’s election laws, as I have said before, are all screwed up and are in serious need of reform. They need reform not to favor one party over another, they sorely need reform to ensure a fair system in the public’s only real avenue left to make its wishes known.

I have many ideas about election reform, but I shall save them until later. Perhaps some other time.

1 Comment

  • As the author likes throwing out “red meat” to chaw on, I’ll take the bait, since I’m astonished no one else has commented on his outlandish assertions.
    We have to show ID when we are stopped by law enforcement while driving, before boarding a plane, when getting legal papers (driver’s license, concealed carry permits, marriage license) from local, county, state and federal entities, cashing a check at a bank and we shouldn’t be required to show ID when voting? What idiocy is that? Or does the author like the voting rights to be open to illegals or voting more than once during an election? I think the motto “vote, and vote often” is the Democrat mantra. Is the author exposing a liberal bias or just wanting “open voting”, no matter who may want to vote (legal, illegal, more than once, dead people voting (a common Chicago trait) etc.)?
    And what tainted 2000 election? The one that Gore’s lawyers had the military vote voided because they were overseas and the votes weren’t received post haste? Does everyone remember the cross-eyed vote counters looking at “hanging” or dimpled chads being recounted. How many times was there a recount – 3-4 times. And the election was tainted? Yeah, Gore stunk up the place with his protestations.
    The author and Gore share a common trait nobody likes – a sore loser. Get used to it. Or are you now so embarrassed by voting for “hope and change” you hope you have some change left in your pocket before he leaves office? He is a disgrace to the office with his pen and phone style of governing and the Republicans are just as complicit as he.

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