May 26, 2003
This has got to be a new low: The turnout in Tuesday's runoff election was barely over 9%. Assuming the election cost us taxpayers $1.5 million (a conservative estimate), that means the city paid out close to $10 for every single vote cast ... at a time when hospitals are closing and our schools are facing cutbacks. This is a crime. It's time to change this busted system and elect our leaders with one election, not two. If the city simply used instant runoff voting, we could get a majority winner in each race the first time out and not have to dump millions of taxpayer dollars into costly runoff elections.
March 24, 2003
Re "Antiwar Stance Risky for Democrats," March 20: George Skelton repeats the simplistic canard that the Green Party is responsible for putting George W. Bush in the White House. The argument is that had Ralph Nader voters not voted for him in the Florida election they would have voted for Al Gore. What Skelton and others refuse to acknowledge is that, absent the option of voting for a true progressive, the Green voters would most likely have not voted at all. Remember that the voter turnout in the last presidential election was among the lowest ever.
November 30, 2002
George Skelton is wrong in his Nov. 25 column, "Only Fed-Up Voters Can Fix State's Damaged System for Picking Legislators." He suggests having open, nonpartisan primaries, but this wouldn't improve anything, especially because it would limit the general election to only two candidates, among other things. Instant runoff voting might help. Under this system, votes are cast for the candidates in order of preference. So, if your first choice is the Libertarian candidate, you mark him or her as first choice.
March 4, 2001
The news that 19 candidates filed to be on the special election ballot to fill the 32nd District seat vacated by the passing of Rep. Julian Dixon (Feb. 27) makes it clear that people who live there will have no representation until the June runoff election. This crowded field presents a good argument in favor of AB 1515, introduced by Assembly Speaker Bob Hertzberg. It will provide for instant runoff voting to fill future vacancies. Instant runoff voting allows each voter to enumerate his or her favorite candidates, 1-2-3.