news about Prop. 14

The webpage www.yeson14openprimary.com has a list of 26 organizations that support Prop. 14.

Yesterday I looked for contact information for these 26 groups, and when I could, I e-mailed, faxed, or wrote a postal letter politely asking them to hear the other side and possibly reconsider.

This morning I got an e-mail from the spokesperson for one of the listed groups, "Hispanic 100". She says they didn't endorse Prop. 14 and they would certainly not have taken a position without hearing from both sides.

Another group, and the only one in the SF Bay Area, is the California Asian Peace Officers. Two members of their board say they have no awareness that they have taken a position on Prop. 14, although this won't be nailed down until I can communicate with the President, Rod Chin, who works as a San Francisco District Attorney Investigator.

Every one of us enjoys working on certain things to help the Libertarian Party more than working on other things. I understand that. I enjoy working against Prop. 14. I realize that may not be the same for most other members of our group. Still, I could really use some help, and if anyone wants to also work against Prop. 14, please let me know.

Tomorrow morning Christina Tobin speaks against Prop. 14 at the Santa Clara Chamber of Commerce, at 8 a.m. She and I are driving down to stay in San Jose tonight so we won't need to fight traffic to be there on time tomorrow morning. She has an opponent. I don't know if it is a true debate or just equal time for two points of view without any back-and-forth. She hasn't spoken publicly about Prop. 14 yet, so it's a new experience.

Richard,

  Thanks for your efforts in opposing this ballot measure. Calling the
organizations listed as supporters was an excellent idea of yours,
which I see has already paid off! I recognize Proposition 14's
importance to our party (in a negative sense of course!), but in my
case it's true as you recognize may be the case for some LP members,
that voting methods and such aren't an area of public policy on which
I particularly enjoy working, nor do I consider myself very well
informed about the debate surrounding this measure. Nevertheless, I am
happy to help oppose it to the extent that I reasonably can. The
question did come up at the Supervisor debate in which I took part on
Feb. 22, although I personally was not asked about it, so having
access to succinct talking points could be helpful.

Love & Liberty,
        ((( starchild )))

Thanks, Starchild. Here are 5 unpleasant characteristics of Prop. 14 that almost no one knows about:

1. It bans write-ins in November for Congress and state office. This is more serious than it sounds. Californians do use the write-in. A write-in candidate was elected Mayor of Long Beach in 2002. A write-in candidate was almost elected Mayor of San Diego in 2005. Donna Frye, the write-in candidate, actually got more votes than any of the people listed on the ballot, but she was not seated because the government refused to recognize the validity of about 10% of her write-ins because the voter didn't know to "X" the box next to the name that voter had just written in. Californians elected write-in candidates to Congress at the general elections of 1982, 1946 and 1930.

2. It makes it far more difficult for ballot-qualified parties to remain recognized. The law now lets us stay on if we poll 2% for any statewide race in a midterm year (we get a free ride in presidential years). Prop. 14 says parties don't have nominees, so that method would be defunct and we could only remain on by meeting the tougher standards for new parties, to have registration of about 100,000 members. We have 84,000 now. Peace & Freedom only has 58,000 and would be doomed.

3. It does not treat all candidates equally. Members of qualified parties could list their party on the ballot but members of unqualified parties could not.

4. It shuts off all avenues to the November election by mid-March. Currently independent candidates can enter any partisan race in California by filing a petition in August of the election year. It is dangerously rigid to give the voters no option to support a late-entering candidate, because some major unexpected event could occur after March that would create a real need for a new person in the race.

5. Worst of all, by letting only two candidates on the November ballot, it deprives voters of choices that they have now, and also makes it meaningless for a minor party or independent who doesn't place first or second in June to campaign in the summer and autumn of election years, when most people are paying attention to campaigns. Prop. 14 is a massive shutdown of the free circulation of ideas.