Readers' forum: Parties not from Constitution

Published: Monday, Jan. 14 2008 12:18 a.m. MST

In the article "Ex-Alpine superintendent to run as Democrat" (Jan. 9), you quoted a Wayne Crabb, whose comments imply that our Constitution set up the party system. That assertion is simply not true. A simple scan of the Constitution itself debunks the notion.

In fact, some of the Founding Fathers warned of the dangers of political parties. In his farewell address, George Washington warned, "I have already intimated to you the danger of parties — the common and continual mischiefs of the spirit of party are sufficient to make it the interest and duty of a wise people to discourage and restrain it."

Simply voting for a Democrat because there are too many Republicans (or vice versa) is a poor use of one's right of suffrage. Concerns about political balance are relevant, but more pressing are questions about the extent to which fundamental principles guide our politics.

Lyall Swim

director of operations

Sutherland Institute

Salt Lake City

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