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A Brief Commentary on Partisan Elections

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I was just having a conversation on Facebook with a friend of mine who posted a note thanking his state senator for opposing efforts by some in his county to move to non-partisan elections.  He happens to be a sitting County Commissioner in one of those “foreign” eastern NC counties. 🙂 If you have at all paid attention to my politics over the last year, you will know that my position has been one in opposition to political parties.  I penned this really quick as a response, and figured it would be a good conversation starter, if not a fully fleshed out missive.

I have no problem with people affiliating with a political party if they so choose. However, in my eyes, there is no difference between the Republican Party, the Democrat Party, the Libertarian Party and any other private organization which seeks to make a political statement. Why isn’t FreedomWorks on the ballot? Or MoveOn for that matter?

In the grander scheme, our government has essentially been removed from the people and put in the hands of a few, private, organizations who in my view don’t actually seek the best for the country, but rather what is best for that private political organization. The fact government chooses who is allowed to appear on the ballot, or forces people to affiliate with a Party they may not actually agree with just to run for office, is completely counter to freedom and free choice. The fact our government pays these private entities costs associated with choosing their candidates is mind blowing. Even on your tax form you are allowed to donate to a major political party, making the continuation and dominance of those Parties all the greater.

While I support the dismantling of the current system which benefits only a select few entities, I could accept in the meantime moving to the following:

*Eliminate open primary elections paid for with tax dollars.
*Have the Parties either pay for their own primaries or have their elections for nominations via the already existing convention structure.
*Open up ballot access to make it actually possible for independent/unaffiliated individuals to have an equal standing on general election ballots with those who chose to affiliate with a recognized Party.

If someone tells me they are a Republican, that doesn’t mean anything to me. Does it mean they are like John McCain or Ted Cruz? Lindsey Graham or Rand Paul? The Republican Party is actually three or four different parties all vying for control of the same tool/power structure. There will always be civil war taking place that will see it’s ebbs and flows, but no side will ever be dominant for that long. To me, I’d rather avoid wasting time trying to “control” a party structure, and more time sharing my values and ideas with the voting public.

Far too many people rely on the “Party” as a lazy way to figure out who to vote for. People who would otherwise be against something, if a Republican supports it, then they just hop on board or assume it is a good thing. This level of “dumbing down” politics is a disservice. The only people who win are the monied interests and consultants.

Let’s start thinking outside the box and seek to discover new ways to eliminate the “middle man” between the people and their government.

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