U.S. Supreme Court decisions have made it nearly impossible for fairness in our elections, for every vote to carry equal weight. The wealthy buy votes in Congress and in any state legislature, and so negate the votes of ordinary citizens.
We need to stand up for fairness in our elections. We can start by changing our primaries so that Ohio candidates have to pay attention to the people of our state as a whole and not just the party a candidate belongs to and the wealthy donors of that party.
Primary elections should be elections in which the people nominate the candidates, not the political parties. Over one-third (about 42 percent of Ohioans) call themselves independent voters and are excluded from primaries, except for voting on issues.
Fairness dictates that every voter should receive a ballot that shows all the candidates for each office, regardless of party affiliation. Then every voter could select any candidate he or she likes and expect that winners would give weight to the votes of the people.
The top two vote-getters would advance to the general election. Candidates who emerge from this kind of primary would have to pay attention to the people.
These candidates would be free to vote their conscience, not follow the radical agenda of a party or the special interests of the wealthy. Some states already have such primaries. We, too, need to step up and protect our democracy.
We don’t have such a system yet, but when it finally happens in Ohio, we need to send a message to candidates and political parties. We need to vote for a top-two primary system.
The letter writer who described increases in state funding for Ohio’s public colleges and universities presented a flawed argument (“On taxes and tuition,” April 21).
He can spin the numbers any way he would like, but the fact is that Ohio ranks in the bottom 10 among states for funding higher education, according to the Student Impact Project.
Five categories were used to grade each state. Ohio received a D and four Fs. Our legislature does an abysmal job of supporting higher education, which is why college graduates in Ohio leave school with an average debt in excess of $25,000.
How refreshing to see such an uplifting story on the front page on April 19. Good job, and congratulations to the Hearst family for such an awesome accomplishment (“Sons soar to Eagle Scout”).