Friday, September 9, 2011

Time for Republicans to End Losing Political Fight Against Early, Satellite Voting

Channel 6 reports:
Marion County Clerk Beth White unveiled another strategy Friday in her push to have early satellite voting in the November election.

The biggest dispute between Democrats and Republicans over early voting at alternate locations has revolved around cost, which both sides agreed would be about $50,000.

White took that argument off the table by pulling together a $50,000 donation from the United Auto Workers, 6News' Norman Cox reported

"50,000 is not an inappropriate amount of money to spend for this purpose, but they've said they don't want to spend it," White said. "Well, thanks to the UAW, they're not going to have to. Private funds have been coming forward, and now all they have to do is sign the agreement."

There would be no cost for satellite sites, either. [Republican] Southport Mayor Rob Thoman volunteered his city building to be used as a satellite voting facility on the south side, and [Democratic] Washington Township Trustee Frank Short plans to provide his offices for a polling place on the north side.
I have previously said that opposition to the satellite voting sites is likely to blow up in the Republicans' face.  I argued that Republicans should agree to a compromise that allows them to pick up one satellite location while the Democrats pick the other one.  While the Republicans have a point about the cost of satellite voting, it is not worth committing political suicide to take that position.

Now White has taken cost off the table, Republicans are left with the second and political reason they don't support satellite aids Democratic voters who are slightly less likely to show up and vote on Election Day than Republican voters are.

It's time for the GOP to give up this losing fight.  To go further will tether Mayor Ballard even more closely to the Republicans unpopular recalcitrance on the issue, giving Melina Kennedy a gold-plated election issue.


Covenant60 said...

Wouldnt satellite voting places make it harder to vote, as they would be farther away and would take more effort and time to travel to?

Blog Admin said...

I don't know, BayernFan. Voting at the City-County Building early in-person can be quite a task for most people who drive. Parking is horrible around the county building during business hours. Ideally, the satellite voting sites would have ample parking available.

Paul K. Ogden said...

Bayer, satellite, early voting locations are in addition to the downtown site and are in addition to precinct voting sites on Election Day.

Indy man said...

I think that Republicans shoot themselves in the foot when they try to discourage voter turnout.

That said, I believe that there is ceremonial importance to voting on election day. I received my diploma in a public ceremony and I was married in a public ceremony. I want to make a public display of myself voting.

If you have respect for what you are doing, you should want to display your pride in voting. Voting in strange places on strange days cheapens our respect for democracy.

Paul K. Ogden said...

Indy man,

I couldn't agree more. I'm not that big of a fan of early voting, but you're right that R's hurt themselves when they try to discourage voter turnout.

I am a fan of voting centers which would make it possible to vote at multiple locations on Election Day. Actually both parties in Marion County are against that.

I know said...

It is time for the republicans, yes in small letters, and all the rest of the Indianapolis and Indiana elitists to pack their eqo's, their holier than thou attitudes and go find some honest, forward thinking and hard working LEADERS!!!

Your Pacers are bleeding you dry, the Colts are getting their horse poo handed to them in Texas and all Indiana can say is gee we will have the super bowl for a little money and fun ONE weekend.

What about the other 51 weeks in a year.

Get a clue Indiana you still have areas in the north that do not even have dial up internet, manufacturing that is decaying and people that fight over money.

WAKE UP! Early or late vote centers won't matter when no one registers over apathy and sickness of the greedy, rich fat cat crap.

foretell said...

Everyone should look at what is happening here realistically. This is not about voter convenience; it is about machine politics.
The (Center) Township Trustee distributes poor relief. The Democratic Party asks for payback in the form of votes. On election day there are vans driven by Democratic operatives, which escort people to the polls.
If election day is expanded to 30 election days, then there is the opportunity to get 100 per cent turnout in the Democratic precincts.

Blog Admin said...

foretell, there are vehicles driven by Republican groups and Republican leaning groups as well. I know several tea party organizations were organizing bus trips, car pools, etc... in the 2010 election cycle to vote