It's not time for caucus "reform" -- it's time for caucus
elimination. When a voter casts a ballot in an election s/he knows his/her vote
counts (even if the voter's favored candidate is defeated). The same is
not true at a caucus -- we select someone to decide, at some time in the future,
who s/he will vote for at a convention (County) where someone else is selected
to decide at another convention (State) who will be the candidate on the ballot
in an actual election. the chance of any caucus-goer's "vote"
actually being a deciding factor is slim to none.I want my vote to
actually count. That is why I'm going to sign the Count My Vote petition
at the earliest possible moment and urge everyone with whom I speak to do the
same (and then vote to get rid of the caucus system and establish a primary
election so the voters can actually select their own candidates to go on the
Utah 1,Thanks for sharing info on how the GOP is striving to improve
participation. Your familiarity with such data indicates to me that you are
probably a GOP insider with a vested interest in preserving the current system.
I served as a delegate this past election cycle, and I attended the 2013 GOP
Organizing Convention when delegates voted down every reform proposal that was
submitted. Delegates and insiders currently hold the power in the current system
-- therefore it is no surprise that they don't want the system changed.The fact remains that, unless I am elected as a delegate, I have zero
say in who the party nominates. A primary system gives me a voice. There is
nothing that you can say about "increasing participation" in the caucus
system that changes that. Also, you never addressed the question I raised
earlier -- if the caucus system is so great, why do we have a primary system for
presidential elections? The inconsistency here is mind-boggling.
How could you get a small group to distort democracy?
I would like to thank "Lightbearer" for providing me with a link to
investigate who the "editorial board" are. Although the
link does not appear to mention the "editorial board" other than the
advisory board, of which I am aware, I am grateful to see various editors listed
on the page.These are NOT the general authorities of the LDS Church,
so my faith in those authorities remains unchallenged. These editorial
opinions,are often diametrically opposed to mine, based on an ongoing review of
the scriptures, prophetic talks etc, in which I seek not confirmation of any
pre-existing views but direction.A perusal of these editors does not
qualify them, in my view, to offer any more than a human opinion. I hear many
similar opinions among members of my faith, as well as many very different
opinions from the same source.This particular article is inaccurate.
The caucus system DOES NOT "exclude the public from deciding who its
candidates might be". It actually invites a much more comprehensive
participation of ALL with the ability to provide far more than the sparse
information offered by the print media.
i am hank, Careful what you wish for. As you know from 2008 to 2010
neighborhood election meeting attendance doubled. From 2010 to 2012, meeting
attendance doubled again. There is hope that in 2014, 250,000 will attend. I
know that The State GOP has a committee that is working to make sure we
don't have the same problems for 2014 and that the system can handle the
volume of those interested and still allow time to meet candidates and ask
questions.New proposals for 2014 is a better system for check in,
including optional pre-registration. The ability to optionally pre-file to run
to represent your neighbors as well. The meeting will be designed to last for 2
hrs. or less, from 7pm to 9pm. There will be a pre-meeting from 6pm to 7pm to
allow you to personally meet candidates that have decided to run and ask one on
one questions and even with large groups, make sure members can agree on
questions to ask neighborhood representative candidates with more time to hear
from them.I hope you will come again in 2014 and make the meeting
one vote,Senator Lee? re: Sen. Bennett in 2010. He was not in the
top 2 coming out of convention. In fact the more moderate Tim Bridgewater was
selected by 57% of the delegates in the last round. Mike Lee managed to get 43%
and make it to a primary. Sen. Bennett endorsed Tim Bridgewater during the
primary, but with voters ticked at TARP and ObamaCare, they went with Mike Lee.
I agree that it's time for caucus reform. My own neighborhood caucus is a
joke. We have a couple of silvery tongued know-it-alls whose votes are
allegedly more informed than the rest of us. What a crock of garbage.
where would tea party supporters yell?
Re: "It is simply not accurate to say the current system is somehow more
reflective of the will of the people . . . ."Yeah, it is. That's why it's costing the disingenuous "Buy My Vote"
crowd so much to blunt their grass roots competition.
@American Pareior. Do you seriously believe that the editorial board of the
Deseret News consists of "progressives and liberals"? The selection
process is currently controlled by a small clique of supporters of the Eagle
Forum. I find it difficult to believe they are the voice of the majoritu of utah
Citiozens. i also find it difficult to believe that Mike Leavitt, Norma
Matheson, Gail Miller and others are hungry for power to personally influence
Excellent opinion piece. Well reasoned. Let's put the question on the
ballot and let the voters of Utah decide, just as we should for all primary
candidates. The GOP's closed primary stinks of the same exclusivism and
irrational fear that permeates their approach to politics at all levels in
Re Gildas: "... I cannot find a separate list of names for the
editors."Perhaps this is what you're looking for: Go to the
very bottom of the screen on the Deseret News website and click on "Contact
Us." A page will open listing the management (including the editor and
managing editor) and the department heads (newsroom editor, local news editor,
Gildas, are you claiming that something in the teachings and/or doctrine of The
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints requires Utah to maintain its
archaic and unrepresentative caucus system? Is there a section of the D&C
that mentions state or county conventions?
In the phrase "In Our Opinion" who is the "our"? This view does
not seem to me likely to be that of those who we imagine to be running things at
the Deseret News.I doubt very much it is the general authorities of
the LDS Church who are the "our" as these opinions do not appear to
always correspond with the teachings of so many of them. Neither, I feel very
sure, do they all have the same opinion about such things. Nor do I think it to
be the unanimous opinion of the "Deseret News editorial advisory board"
judging by their resumes and names.Is there an editorial board that
is "advised" by the "advisory editorial board"? I don't
know but I cannot find a separate list of names for the editors. Can anyone
help me out on this?
As a non-affiliated citizen of Utah I have found that my voice is absolutely
worthless under the current system. Since I'm not part of any party my
voice is rarely going to be heard because those in the parties don't care
about someone who won't be a part of the caucus system due to how closed it
is; which is exactly the opposite of what local politics should be. I'm sad that the parties in Utah are only looking for hegemonic control
and not actually to listening and solving problems. They just want to perpetuate
their narrow minded dogma and not listen to more moderate, new generation
voices. There is a lot to be said of new ideas that the current parties
don't want to listen to. Mostly because they don't want more
ideas--only their ideas and view of what Utah should be. They should give way to
more ideas and really try to do go for the community and not just pander to a
few with similar ideas.
Utah's current system is a joke. I have been a delegate many times, and
every time I participate, my disdain for the process grows. I have heard all of
the arguments for it, and very few of them persuade me. Here's one
question that all of the caucus supporters haven't been able to answer --
if the caucus system is so great, why do we hold presidential primaries in Utah?
Every Republican has been able to go to the ballot and vote for their preferred
candidate for president. They just haven't been able to do it for any
other office. If it is so important that every voter has the right to vote in a
primary for president, why don't voters get the same right for every other
office? I want Count My Vote to succeed. I want the right to vote
on candidates for every office, not just for president. This is what Count My
Vote offers -- a chance for every voter to be heard. Our current system denies
most voters this basic right.
Bravo, D-News Editorial Board!
The Count My Vote concept is a disaster for Utah. The caucus system needs to be
retained. The progressives and liberals are behind this effort to
'reform' the election process in Utah. What I discovered as a GOP
State Delegate was a real eye-opener. This is a carefully planned operation
intended to allow for the Powers That Be to control everything in this state.
The citizens of Utah need to be fighting against the Count My Vote process every
Voter turnout is low in Utah because more & more people are concluding that
their vote doesn't really matter in Utah, since the selection of candidates
are decided by well-organized political insiders.GOP Legislators
were pushing a bill forcing schools to teach that Utah is not a democracy, but a
"compound constitutional republic". If you think about that term, it
actually fits, and this (unintentionally) was a case of rare
honesty-in-advertising:A very small, well organized minority has a
compounded effect in Utah politics. They can effectively impose their agenda on
the less organized majority.Then fewer people vote, voter
disinterest increases, and the cycle repeats. It's the perfect system for
the political minority who seek to exert power over what they describe as a less
worthy majority.Of course the entrenched interests have no interest
in changing things. It's working brilliantly for them!
Unless you want another Senator Lee.
I oppose the changes espoused by count my vote for the reasons repeated many
times prior to the editorial so I will not be redundant here. I do wish to
comment on the lower vote turnout in elections.IMO lover voter
turnout may be due to several factors. Consider that we have a large section of
our society who are illegal immigrants who fear being noticed or discovered at
election polls. We have a lot of young voters who traditionally don't vote
that often and IMO are ignorant of issues, and by in large are self centered and
have a care-less attitude as a whole. We as a state have a large section of our
young adult population serving LDS missions who do not vote and may not
immediately register or re-register upon returning.IMO Count my vote
people are the so-called moderates of both parties who have been excluded from
controlling their party's caucuses as they have in the past and are trying
to regain control. They seem to feel that they, the "Elder Statesmen",
should rule the people. Read into that what you may.
We already have a "bypass" system, filing as an unaffiliated candidate.
A candidate can go straight to the general election ballot. Someone who
doesn't think they can win if vetted by average citizens asking one on one
questions can still run and spend their money. Why should they be a political
party nominee if they are going to bypass their political party?At
only one time for 10 years in Utah’s history did the state depart from the
Neighborhood Election, Caucus and Convention System. In 1937, a powerful
democratic state senator convinced enough of the legislature to switch to an
open primary. He had had two losses, a US Senate race and also for governor,
because the majority of the convention delegates disagreed with his legislative
voting record. But he was well known and had money.Many at the time
felt like an open primary was his ticket to the governorship, and he did win.
But the change in the system only lasted for a decade. After public and media
disillusionment, and even worse voter turnout, Utah restored the Caucus and
Convention System. Why go back?
Stand in the way of the people? There were more media than supporters at the
Count My Vote / Buy My Vote filing announcement. We have a system
that that does NOT favor the incumbent, the wealthy or the famous. This is a
good thing, and should be preserved.The Neighborhood Election and
Convention system in Utah is the best way to make sure a grassroots process can
win over large amounts of money. It is the only way someone with $100,000 can go
against someone with $2 million in election funds.We want neighbors
discussing the best candidates and finding ways to improve this state and the
nation. If the system is changed, we would be dropping off votes, but not
meeting and discussing candidates and issues. That is what is wrong with
Washington, D.C. They don’t listen to each other in a meeting. They watch
from their offices. We need to change that, not perpetuate it.