Letters: Change voting laws


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  • trekker Salt Lake, UT
    July 14, 2013 6:08 p.m.

    This is the most cold hearted sicking letter I have ever read in any newspaper. Maybe the instead of handing out welfare for the persons life, help to enable those receiving to be able support themselves to earn a livable income, I am willing to bet most would like not to be on assistance, but when cost of living, fuel goes up but wages are poor, after working hard at my job, me and everyone else only received 30 cent increase. My immediate supervisor was embarrassed that was all HR and upper management would approve. In this economy a job is a job, it is not easy to find another one that pays better. Maybe if I had help to pay for higher education without going in sevier debt in student loans I would go to school graduate and find a job that pays better. instead of pouring out billions into welfare lets pay for education, give a man a fish he eats for a day teach a man to fish he eats the rest of his life.

  • cavetroll SANDY, UT
    July 13, 2013 6:57 p.m.

    @ 2 bits
    "Why does the Left always go after Farmers?"

    It's not necessarily the farmers people are "going after." It's the large companies who don't need the subsidies. Larry H. Miller recieved farm subsidies. As did former gov. Mike Leavitt and, most shockingly James L. Sorenson, a Utah billionaire. Do these people realyy need government subsidies? I think not.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 13, 2013 2:40 p.m.

    The women,
    The Hispanic,
    The young,
    The old,
    The gay,
    The non-Christian,
    The 47%...

    And the GOP can't figure out WHY they keep loosing and loosing.

    The irony is,
    They also keep insisting that they STILL are conservative enough.

    Bye, bye.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    July 13, 2013 1:53 p.m.

    Then corporate executives who run companies into the ground yet take away tens or hundreds of millions of dollars should also have the right to vote taken away.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 13, 2013 10:44 a.m.

    This letter displays everything that is wrong with the GOP/tea party.

    Rather than listen to those outside of the 1 percent, he'd rather just shut then out. Exclude not Include.

    That's why the GOP is failing.

  • tenx Santa Clara, UT
    July 13, 2013 10:44 a.m.

    Corporate Welfare? The many corporations of which I own a part of pay the highest corporate tax rate in the industrialized world. Then when they pass my share of the profits to me I also pay a high tax rate on those profits. Both of these (double) taxes go to the goverment who hand out the welfare. I suppose that is your meaning of corporate welfare!

  • tenx Santa Clara, UT
    July 13, 2013 10:26 a.m.

    I don't see how the posters determined that Mr. Green is a Tea Party spokesman. At the very least we must give the Tea Party credit for bringing to our attention that we have a spending/debt problem caused by our reps in Washington DC. Before, nobody seemed to be aware of that fact!

  • Tulip West Jordan, UT
    July 12, 2013 10:43 p.m.

    CBSnews.com reported four days ago the the dept of agriculture estimates 101 million people currently participate in one of the 15 food programs offered by the US government. Sorry I did have it wrong...by one million.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 12, 2013 10:07 p.m.

    Los Angeles, CA



  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    July 12, 2013 10:05 p.m.

    If we do exempt those who are on welfare from voting, then we also most exempt children who's parents couldn't vote while they were growing up from serving in the military should the draft be brought back. Those parents didn't elect the fools who keep getting us and keeping us in un-necessary wars, so that family shouldn't have to suffer those consequences.

  • Wastintime Los Angeles, CA
    July 12, 2013 5:20 p.m.

    Wait... perhaps the letter writer is onto something. Along the same lines, perhaps we should eliminate "taker" states' representation from federal legislative bodies. So states like Utah, who receive more federal dollars back than they contribute in tax dollars, would not be able to send senators and representatives to Washington to vote for more Utah military installations, spy facilities, and other projects.

  • Bob Dobbs Salt Lake City USA, UT
    July 12, 2013 4:42 p.m.

    I appreciate your sincere response (something that doesn't happen here too often). My point is that starry-eyed comments like "I voted for an amazing leader who tried to include a bipartisan approach to governing" is completely absurd.
    I'm willing to call a spade a spade, no matter which side of the isle they're on. Self-serving politicians of both parties will be the downfall of America - at least as I have known it.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 12, 2013 4:28 p.m.

    Why do repubs hate America?

    Why do repubs want to prevent fellow Americans from voting?

    Why do repubs hate the elderly, the young, the minorities, and the women so much?

    Why do repubs blame everything on the poor?

    Why do repubs claim that the constitution is divinely inspired yet constantly try to rewrite it?

    Why, oh why, after losing twice do they keep beating the same drum instead of purging themselves from all this radical and extremism?

    When repubs are through playing their childish games, they can join the rest of us adults at the dinner table. Until then, you folks aren't going to win a single election.

  • Grover Salt Lake City, UT
    July 12, 2013 3:44 p.m.

    Bob: Who is naive? At least liberals are aware that the Congress has two Houses and one is controlled by Republicans. In the three years they have been in control they have passed not a single piece of legislation that would alter or improve (heaven forbid) the status of healthcare in this Country. Where are the ideas? I guess they used up all their energy voting to repeal Obamacare 37 times. Now that's an accomplishment we can be proud of (not) and a great reason for independents to lean left to a party that at least sees the problems we face (even if they are not ringing the bell either).

  • One of a Few Layton, UT
    July 12, 2013 1:42 p.m.

    Let's straight about who can't vote then:

    Elderly can't - social security and medicare; poor can't - welfare and madicaid; middle class and anyone with children can't - public roads, education, paying for future SS, medicare, and tax deductions too numerous to count; most wealthy can't - TARP and other tax deductions/bailouts too numerous to mention; government employees can't - obviously. I guess that leaves about 1% who just might be eligible to vote. Which is just about right I guess. Good idea Mr. Green. I hope you and the Koch brothers sleep well tonight. I don't think you have to worry about this anymore. This is absolutely an idea that people everywhere can support.

  • Noodlekaboodle Poplar Grove, UT
    July 12, 2013 1:28 p.m.

    So we are taking anyone over 65 out of the voting pool, because SS and Medicare are both welfare programs. And before you start arguing that you pay in, while it's true that people pay for SS and Medicare they don't pay in nearly as much as they get out in benefits(especially medicare) so yes, it is a welfare program.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 12, 2013 1:13 p.m.

    Of course...
    The letter writer is only referring to the poor, sick, needy, minorities, and elderly --
    you know -- PEOPLE.

    CORPORATE Welfare is NEVER mentioned by guys like this...

  • Grover Salt Lake City, UT
    July 12, 2013 12:55 p.m.

    Bob D. : An update of the De Tocqueville quote (which he could never have imagined) would be..."The American Republic will endure until the day the public discovers that it can bribe the Congress with campaign funding."

  • Bob Dobbs Salt Lake City USA, UT
    July 12, 2013 12:18 p.m.

    "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money."
    Alexis de Tocqueville

  • 2 bit Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 12, 2013 12:08 p.m.

    I agree about how mindlessly this devolved into a partisan discussion. Nothing about politics was said, but immediately everybody assumed the usual political positions. It's interesting how we almost instinctively line up in our respective camps. I hate stereotypes, but our reactions almost validate that the usual stereotypes are true. IF they are true... that would be REALLY sad.

    Irony Guy,
    Who said anything about Food Stamps?

    What does this topic have to do with "we need to get rid of special interest funding and eliminate the hateful tea party rhetoric"? That seems to be your response to EVERYTHING.

    Isn't hateful rhetoric towards the TeaParty "hateful"? So are YOU any better than they are?

  • Grundle West Jordan, UT
    July 12, 2013 11:36 a.m.

    I love how mindlessly this devolved into a partisan discussion. The letter writer did not mention party or political leanings.

    The letter writer pointed out a weakness of our representative republic. The weakness is one of human nature not of party or politics. To deny the weaknesses of our system is foolhardy.

    Take a good look at ourselves. I believe the biggest problem that we face as a nation is a lack of unity around core values. The primary of which should be personal freedom and personal responsibility. That doesn't mean that there are not other values to consider, but that all policy creation and enactment should be seen first and foremost through these lenses.

    If our motivation for voting is to help ourselves gain advantage over someone else (individual, party, race, etc...) then some serious soul searching and education needs to happen.

    I love our country and I love its rich history. We are an evolving people. We have, at times, brought out the best in man and at other times brought out the worst. We must continue to seek for the ideal and strive to be better.

    All that said...Restricting the vote is a bad idea.

  • micawber Centerville, UT
    July 12, 2013 11:15 a.m.


    I believe about 48 million people are enrolled in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. Obviously, that is millions more than we would like to see. But it is also much less than 100 million.

  • Claudio Springville, Ut
    July 12, 2013 10:48 a.m.

    I trust the author also believes all military personnel, diplomats, elected officials and those who work on their staffs, and anyone who works in a government capacity (i.e. postal workers, police officers, firefighters, meat inspectors, teachers, etc.) should also be exempt from voting.

    After all, they clearly have the same conflict of interest as some of these civil servants not only receive welfare benefits, but are receiving a salary from the government too.

    What parasites!

  • Kalindra Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 12, 2013 10:37 a.m.

    Please name one US citizen who does not benefit in some way, shape, or form from government policy.

    We all have a vested interest in our government - that is what makes democracy work. To claim that those who benefit should not be allowed to vote shows a clear lack of understanding of what out country is about.

    Here's an idea - if we are going to limit who can vote, let's limit it based on the ability to express an understanding of how government works.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    July 12, 2013 10:24 a.m.

    Lib: "Why not set votes based on wealth?" Done. By Citizens United.

    Tytler's maxim that a democracy can only exist until voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury has been proven true -- but in ways he never anticipated. Instead of the majority voting themselves largesse, it is a wealthy minority doing so.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    July 12, 2013 10:23 a.m.

    The author claimed no political side, left or right.

    Yep, stop class warfare – recall BO, the biggest instigator of class warfare in the country!

    I don’t disagree; Jeff Imelt and the rest of BO’s corporate buddies, along with the rest of the liberal elite should be subjected to the same restrictions.

    Thank you for your support (twice) of George Bush. Your description of the obstruction he faced from nancy and harry was spot-on.

    Twin Lights,
    Simple solution – pay the military better. Oh, the dems cannot stomach more military spending

    Yep, farm subsidies should be included.
    Repubs won the house – twice. Deal with it.

    Ultra Bob,
    No, the founders only gave the “right” to vote to white males who owned land. I am not espousing that, but your comment was factually wrong.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 12, 2013 9:58 a.m.

    Why stop there?
    Who should we disenfranchise next? Muslims? Mormons? Mommys?

    Why not set votes based on wealth?

    Why should the Elderly, Sick and the poor have a voice?
    Why should anyone in the military have a say-so?
    Why should college students be represented?

    The 1% who own 80% of the wealth and pay 80% of the taxes,
    therefore they should then have 80% of the vote, right?

    Talk about trashing EVERYTHING the Constitutiton ever stood for...

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 12, 2013 9:48 a.m.

    If we have any hope of saving this nation we need to get rid of special interest funding and eliminate the hateful tea party rhetoric so prevelent in this letter.

    Stop the class warfare!

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    July 12, 2013 9:38 a.m.

    Most food stampers have jobs or are students trying to get through school. Years ago, when I was a public schoolteacher, my family qualified for food stamps although we didn't participate. The typical Walmart worker is probably on food stamps. Many elderly use food stamps because SS doesn't cover basic expenses. To throw all these people into a box and call them deadbeats is hardly fair. Call me crazy, but I'm glad we have a system to help people who would otherwise be unable to work or study or even survive.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 12, 2013 9:08 a.m.

    "(the proverbial 99% taking from the 1% in America's case)."

    When adjusted for inflation over the past 30 years middle class income has been stagnant while the top 1% has skyrocketed. We had the most unequal wealth distribution in 2007 we've had since 1928 (interesting that both of these years were just before massive recessions/Great Depression).

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 12, 2013 9:06 a.m.

    I'm sure the writer thinks an exception is medicare/social security recipients since the elderly are Republicans most reliable voters after all.

    July 12, 2013 9:03 a.m.

    It is encouraging to see that James stands alone on his vindictive, short-sighted proposal. There were dozens of responses to this letter in the other paper. And like 100 percent of those responding here, every single person thought this was the worst idea anyone ever had.

  • Kent C. DeForrest Provo, UT
    July 12, 2013 8:51 a.m.

    This letter is just another ridiculous twist on Romney's infamous 47 percent faux pas (or was it a faux pas?). The conservative approach to saving our country is to allow wealth to accumulate at the top so that an increasing percentage of the population can't make ends meet without government assistance or charity. Then pass laws to punish people for not being wealthy.

    Of course, the letter writer's theory breaks down when exposed to the light of reality (which is something the conservatives have only a distant acquaintance with). In Utah, many people who receive government assistance voted for Romney. Apparently, they didn't get the memo.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 12, 2013 8:48 a.m.

    Seems to me that the founding fathers of this nation were guided by the notion that the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness belong to a person by the mere fact of being born. That no one had to earn those rights.

    If a person is deprived of being able to influence his government, those rights have been erased.

    There is no one in America that does not in some way, large or small, benefit our nation. It doesn’t matter if we are old or young, black, white, red or brown or any other color. We are all consumers of the products and services of other Americans.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 12, 2013 8:34 a.m.

    Why does the Left always go after Farmers?

    Farmers seem like good people to me. And I'm glad they are out there. I like eating food. I'd rather have one farmer around than a hundred pimple-faced desk workers (or Mitt Romneys).

    I don't know how many farmers get supsidies. I don't follow that closely. But Farming should be self sufficient. I mean we have very few people providing the food for millions of people. You would think we could pay them enough to live on... right? I mean we DIE without them... right?

    I don't know if doing away with farm-subsidies would mean a sizable portion of the west couldnt vote. I live in the West and just looking around... I don't think everybody out here's a farmer. I would guess maybe 5% of the population in Western States are farmers.

    I don't know that IF we did away with farm subsidies... most of the west couldn't vote. But I'm pretty sure if we put farmers out of business... most of the East wouldn't be able to eat or survive very long.

  • SG in SLC Salt Lake City, UT
    July 12, 2013 8:30 a.m.

    ...because it ALWAYS a good idea to disenfranchise whole segments or classes of the citizenry...

    In terms of addressing an admittedly serious issue that calls for discussion, debate, collaboration, and our brightest and most innovative minds to engage in finding a solution, Mr. Green's proposal is roughly the equivalent of swatting a fly with a sledgehammer.

  • KJB1 Eugene, OR
    July 12, 2013 7:54 a.m.

    So I'm guessing that farm subsidies would also count as "welfare"? How would telling a sizable portion of the West that they could no longer vote play? Or are Mitt Romney and his friends the only people "self-sufficient" enough to vote?

    Obama won. Twice. Get over it.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 12, 2013 7:49 a.m.

    Tyler's exact quote is...
    "It is not, perhaps, unreasonable to conclude, that a pure and perfect democracy is a thing not attainable by man, constituted as he is of contending elements of vice and virtue, and ever mainly influenced by the predominant principle of self-interest. It may, indeed, be confidently asserted, that there never was that government called a republic, which was not ultimately ruled by a single will, and, therefore, (however bold may seem the paradox,) virtually and substantially a monarchy."

    So some wise people agree with you. And history agrees with you. But I'm pretty sure SOME people are going to just cover their eyes and ears and be willingly blind to reality and just hammer you.

  • Tulip West Jordan, UT
    July 12, 2013 7:48 a.m.

    With over 100 million on food stamps alone I think it's safe to say the economic collapse is here. It's hard however to put the blame on those trying to feed their families. Policy decisions in Washington are the foundational cause of all the entitlement i.e. high unemployment, O'bamacare cause and effect,etc. Unfortunately, it 's also true, the longer people remain on entitlement programs the more comfortable they become with it. How sad it is to watch a once great nation slide into such mediocrity.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 12, 2013 7:45 a.m.

    I see your logic James, but in a Democracy EVERY Citizen needs to have a vote. So what you suggest is never going to happen (and probably shouldn't).

    But your logic is correct. Many scholars when studying democracy point out the exact flaw you have touched on. That the downfall of every democracy will be when the majority discovers it can use it's vote to TAKE what they want from the minority (the proverbial 99% taking from the 1% in America's case).

    Scottish Lawyer Alexander Fraser Tyler is the one most famous for pointing this out (in the early 1700s). But I'm sure Aristotle, Socrates, etc, who studied human nature also understood and talked and wrote about it.

    Tyler's jist is...
    "A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits with the result the democracy collapses because of the loose fiscal policy ensuing, always to be followed by a dictatorship, then a monarchy"

    But IMO this is a human character flaw. Not a Democracy flaw.

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    July 12, 2013 7:28 a.m.

    Thank you, Mr. Green, for demonstrating so beautifully why most of America regards the Tea Party as a sad joke.

    To my friends in the GOP - pay attention. These guys have become your base, and it's why you're failing.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    July 12, 2013 7:27 a.m.

    Be careful. The last published information I saw indicated 25% of military families are on food stamps. Also, that $100 million worth of food stamps were redeemed at military commissaries (which includes veterans as well as active military).

    The poor or struggling are not always who we imagine they are.

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    July 12, 2013 7:07 a.m.

    Ezra Taft Benson did mention people that elect someone to vote for what is not theres to give I read.

  • Shaun Sandy, UT
    July 12, 2013 5:18 a.m.

    Only in America can someone seriously be jealous of someone on welfare.

  • embarrassed Utahn! Salt Lake City, UT
    July 12, 2013 5:18 a.m.

    I'm frustrated too James! I find it really disgusting how many people fail to accept the will of the American people and self-righteously claim to know better! I voted for an amazing leader who tried to include a bipartisan approach to governing. He ran into no-good, do-nothing obstructionists who got our country into the messes in the first place.

  • Grover Salt Lake City, UT
    July 12, 2013 4:58 a.m.

    Can I assume that Mr. Green would also include CEOs of businesses that receive corporate welfare from the taxpayers? Probably not...individuals are so much easier to single out. Seems like I remember this commentator quoting the Constitution in the past, but now seems to forget it. Voting is the most fundamental right of a citizen. The idea of removing such a basic guarantee when the person could have been forced to ask for assistance by illness or loss of job, is abhorrent. He probably would be willing though to volunteer his time to decide which recipients are "worthy" to vote and those in the slacker category.

  • micawber Centerville, UT
    July 12, 2013 1:46 a.m.

    Maybe we could give each of them 3/5 of a vote?

    Seriously, would this mean no one receiving Social Security could vote? Students receiving student loans or Pell grants? That seems like a bad idea.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 12, 2013 1:11 a.m.

    I was amazed when I read this exact same letter in the Salt Lake Tribune. I continue to be amazed at the Dnews publishing it.

    It's just amazing to me on so many levels. More trampling all over the Constitution by the right wing.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    July 12, 2013 12:50 a.m.

    If we want to hold any hope for saving our republic from self destruction, we must enact legislation that prohibits those running for office from receiving unlimited anonymous donations.

    It is a total conflict of interest to allow those who make laws not disclose that those laws benefit their wealthy campaign contributors. This doesn't work.

    All the unscrupulous politicians have to do is give the tiny, but very wealthy, slice of the population entitlements and/or tax exemptions, and they are guaranteed power forever. Unfortunately, we are already there. Anyone can see this is an irreversible situation, which will ultimately collapse. We must call on our legislators to use a common-sense approach to this very serious problem and change campaign finance laws.