Friday, October 06, 2006

More Evidence of Deep Flaws in Election System

Voter turnout in primaries reached a new nationwide low according to a study conducted by American University. Only 15% of eligible voters cast primary ballots this year, down from the previous bottom of 19%. Does this mean people are tired of negative campaigns, of candidates bringing their own riches or gorging at the corporate money trough?

Voter disgust was mentioned in the article. Is that from the series of purchased politicians charged with crimes but not brought before any Congressional Ethics Committee? Is it from higher ups knowing about Rep. Foley’s inappropriate communications with underage male pages, yet not launching an investigation? Is it from the virtual death of federal campaign finance program as candidates bypass the system for access to much larger special interest/corporate/party budgets?

The people are disgusted by much more than Mark Foley’s personal transgressions, as horrible as they alone are. The primaries happened before Mark’s tawdy behavior hit the newspapers. Who will turn out in November? What version of democracy will they be voting for? At the moment it doesn’t seem worth exporting…

What would it take for American’s to turn out in droves, waving their purple thumbs as they leave the voting booth?

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