By Tom Brennan |
We are probably stuck with mail-in balloting for Anchorage’s municipal elections now, but I still think the system stinks.
We are presumably going to stick with the system since it increased turnout. This year, almost 79,000 voters “turned out” for the election compared to 71,000 in 2012.
I put quotes around the words “turned out” because the voters didn’t turn out at all. They simply filled out their ballots and either mailed them in or dropped them off in a box somewhere. And that is the problem with the system. It eliminates one of the great traditions of democracy in America, the shared experience of going to the polls on Election Day and filling out your ballot in the secrecy of a voting booth. Then most people attach an “I Have Voted” sticker somewhere on their clothing and leave the polling place with the feeling of having fulfilled a civic duty.