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Monday, June 23, 2014

Making sense of primary voting

     Some how I had expected the Maryland primary date to be last May.   Wasn't primary day once in May?  Or I also seem to remember a primary day in September.  Of course we all know the way primary date during presidential years get shuffled around with states wanting to go early enough to make a difference in the selection process.  You certainly don't want to have your primary so late that the winner was already known.  As if the Maryland primary was ever important in the presidential selection.  We are used to being taken for granted by presidential candidates.  Iowa straw polls and small villages in New Hampshire get more attention than this state's 3 million residents.
     So why did the Maryland Board of Elections pick June 24th for our primary?  With school out many people are on vacation this week.  I guess you could have vote early last week or by absentee ballot but wouldn't it make more sense to have it earlier--like in May?
      At least we now have the option to vote on 8 different days in Maryland.  Being in a "blue" state at least we don't have the issues that other Republican states have with making voting more difficult.  Maybe more states, like Maryland, should look at Oregon's voting by mail which they have had for over 10 years. This would be good at least until voting online gets perfected.  You know that with the younger generations living their lives digitally it is only a matter of time until voting online becomes the 21st Century voting system.  This will happen inspite of the challenges that were shown with the sign-ups for the Affordable Health Care program.

P.S.
    With Maryland's growing casino involvement maybe we should try an election day lottery with everyone who votes going into a multi-million dollar lottery.  Every ballot would have a ticket stub with a lottery number on it.  Should at least get a large viewership for the election results show. We could fund this using the checkoff on our tax returns like we have for the matching campaign funds that presidential candidates no longer take.  For every dollar donated you get a another chance in the federal lottery.  With the amount the Feds would keep it would fund the election voting lottery.  I know the voting "purists" are probably shaking their heads at this thought!  Just remember that at one time we thought democracy only only applied white, male, property owners.

P.S. 1
     I have never understood why if we have a fixed date for the general election (first Tuesday in November) why we don't have a fixed national primary day.  The system of states all having their own primary day seems illogical.


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