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Elections Reforms

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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 19, 1997 | RICHARD WARCHOL, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Imagine Democrats crossing over to vote against hard-line conservatives like Assemblyman Tom McClintock, knowing they could create division in the Republican Party. Or how about Republicans casting ballots against Rep. Brad Sherman in the Democratic primary, hoping to defeat the party's strongest contender. That is just what some critics of open primaries fear could happen in Ventura County as 88 years of closed primary elections end.
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NATIONAL
November 10, 2008 | David G. Savage, Savage is a Times staff writer.
The nation's much-maligned election system passed a major test last week when more than 132 million Americans -- a record -- cast ballots with few reports of problems. But now, election reformers are calling for a move toward a "universal voter registration" system, in which the government takes the lead in ensuring that all eligible citizens are registered to vote. "This means the registration process would no longer serve as a barrier to the right to vote," said Wendy R.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 2, 1989
Concerning the current discussion of campaign reforms, I would like to make a suggestion. Ban paid political advertising on television. These commercials are becoming increasingly less informative and more emotion-seeking. Isn't it better for voters to base their decisions based on facts, rather than emotions? Let's reduce the dependence on media consultants and advertising executives. Since television advertising is a major expense of a large campaign, its elimination would reduce the amount of money needed to enter a campaign and/or allow more money to be spent on campaign methods of more substance.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 2, 2008 | David Zahniser
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa on Tuesday named a nationally known election reform advocate to fill a seat on the city's Ethics Commission. Paul H. Turner, who works in community relations and development for Citibank, will fill the seat vacated by Robert Saltzman, who recently joined the city's Police Commission. Turner worked from 2001 to 2006 at the Greenlining Institute's Claiming Our Democracy Program, which advocated for such policies as same-day voter registration and full public financing of elections.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 3, 1998
Outside the conference room at the Civic Arts Plaza stands a hatrack bearing the sign, "Please hang your political hat here." Inside, the 17-member Thousand Oaks Citizens' Blue Ribbon Campaign Finance Reform Committee is striving to do what loftier forces in Sacramento and Washington have repeatedly failed to do: scrub the taint of big bucks from the election process. The challenge outside is nearly as tough as the one inside. That's because memories of The Recall remain fresh and raw.
OPINION
September 25, 2005
Re "Voting for reform," editorial, Sept. 21 One of the suggestions made for voting reforms is a paper trail audit so that machine voting can be checked to make sure the machines are working properly and, in the case of a recount, the paper trail could be used. Bipartisan legislation, Senate Bill 370, which would provide for a paper trail audit, has already passed the state Senate and Assembly. Gov. Schwarzenegger, Californians do not want our Golden State to be the next Florida or Ohio.
NEWS
August 5, 1993 | From Associated Press
Heeding the wishes of corruption-weary Italians for reforms, the Chamber of Deputies on Wednesday approved the last step to make Parliament more directly elected by the people. By a vote of 287 to 78, with 153 abstentions, the lower house gave final passage to a reform making three-fourths of the seats in the upper house, the Senate, directly elected. The remaining seats will be filled under Italy's old system of proportional representation.
NEWS
October 24, 1993 | DOYLE McMANUS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Secretary of State Warren Christopher exhorted Russian voters Saturday to elect reformist candidates to the country's new Parliament, and he offered U.S. assistance in running the coming election. In a speech that combined fervent declarations of support for democracy in Russia with some diplomatically worded electioneering for President Boris N. Yeltsin's close allies, Christopher told an audience of young Russians that their vote Dec. 12 "will change Russia and change the world."
NEWS
November 14, 1990 | From Times Wire Services
Albania's Communist parliament passed an election law allowing secret ballots and a choice of candidates and ordered a sweeping revision of the constitution, the official ATA news agency said today. It said both issues were approved unanimously at a meeting of the People's Assembly in the capital, Tirana, on Tuesday. The decisions mark a further step on a cautious road to reform in Albania, Europe's last orthodox Communist state.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 2, 2008 | David Zahniser
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa on Tuesday named a nationally known election reform advocate to fill a seat on the city's Ethics Commission. Paul H. Turner, who works in community relations and development for Citibank, will fill the seat vacated by Robert Saltzman, who recently joined the city's Police Commission. Turner worked from 2001 to 2006 at the Greenlining Institute's Claiming Our Democracy Program, which advocated for such policies as same-day voter registration and full public financing of elections.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 25, 2006 | Jeffrey L. Rabin, Times Staff Writer
The Los Angeles City Ethics Commission, refining a plan for full public financing of election campaigns, tentatively agreed Tuesday that the money should come primarily from the city's general fund rather than by raising taxes. But the panel delayed a decision until Nov. 14 on whether to send a public financing plan to the City Council for consideration.
OPINION
December 11, 2005
The Times' editorial supporting the "clean money" bill ("Buying back government," Dec. 7) correctly identified public financing of election campaigns as the key factor in leading Sacramento out of its current morass of special interests. In fact, if the Legislature and governor are really going to start working together, as they promise, this is just the place to start. DAN SILVER Los Angeles I support public financing of state elections, but we need to roll back term limits at the same time.
OPINION
September 25, 2005
Re "Voting for reform," editorial, Sept. 21 One of the suggestions made for voting reforms is a paper trail audit so that machine voting can be checked to make sure the machines are working properly and, in the case of a recount, the paper trail could be used. Bipartisan legislation, Senate Bill 370, which would provide for a paper trail audit, has already passed the state Senate and Assembly. Gov. Schwarzenegger, Californians do not want our Golden State to be the next Florida or Ohio.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 23, 2004 | Catherine Saillant and Daryl Kelley, Times Staff Writers
Strict contribution limits for Ventura County supervisorial candidates have evened out fundraising for the March 2 primary campaign, finance reports released Thursday show. But Republican candidates vying for an open Assembly seat, unrestricted by such rules, have already raised more than $1 million in one of the most expensive primary campaigns in California. In three races for county supervisor, money is coming in slowly and steadily, rather than the flood of dollars seen in recent campaigns.
WORLD
November 24, 2003 | Tyler Marshall, Times Staff Writer
Pro-democracy forces made their strongest showing in local elections Sunday, defeating candidates from Beijing-friendly parties in several key contests and increasing pressure on Tung Chee-hwa's government for democratic reform in the territory. The victories carried added legitimacy because they were accompanied by a record voter turnout as residents, clearly disenchanted with Tung's performance and the highly restrictive system that chose him, signaled their desire for change.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 24, 2003 | George Skelton
SACRAMENTO Business interests thought they had a good idea. An idea worth debating, at least: Reform the primary election system to make it more hospitable to moderate, mainstream candidates. Elect pragmatic legislators who aren't ideologues. Who are willing to compromise and deal. This present bunch, after all, can't even agree on a resolution to support America's troops in Iraq. That's how gridlocked it is. Nobody really gives a hoot about the California Legislature's opinion of a foreign war.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 26, 2003 | Catherine Saillant, Times Staff Writer
Ventura County supervisors Tuesday gave initial approval to a tough new ordinance that limits contributions to county election campaigns, expands financial reporting requirements and creates an ethics commission to go after violators. Supervisors voted 4 to 1 to approve the proposal in concept but agreed to delay a formal vote on the new law until next week. Supervisor Judy Mikels cast the dissenting vote.
BUSINESS
February 17, 2003 | Phyllis Plitch, Dow Jones/Associated Press
To many corporate governance and investor activists, annual director elections are a big charade. After all, the only names that appear on shareholder voting ballots are those that already have the blessing of the existing board. Investors get only a "yea" or a "nay." Now, amid a crisis of investor confidence, support has been growing for the once-fringe notion that companies should hand over coveted space on their annual meeting proxies to shareholders' board nominations.
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