Washington Politicians Suck

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Here in Washington, we have the latest primary in the country. It's in September, giving the counties very little time to get the general election ballots out to absentee voters.

Last year a lot of problems arose with this. Lots of accounts of people not getting ballots in time. And so with all the other problems with ballots, this was at the top of everyone's agenda to fix.

Except for, of course, the elected legislators -- of both parties -- who like a late primary, because it gives them more of an opportunity to get reelected, since there's a shorter period for them to be attacked.

So it didn't get done. Instead the Democrats decided to expand the number of mail-in votes in the state -- almost all the counties now have ONLY vote-by-mail -- thus making it even more crucial that they have an early primary. But they don't. They couldn't get it done (from what I heard, the Republicans refused to allow it, because the Democrats refused to require identification at the polls, which the Dmeocrats were trying to get rid of anyway ... it's a huge mess).

So fast forward to today. In King County, the primary had three candidates for the nonpartisan office of King County sheriff. In such a case, the top two candidates go to the general election. The second and third place candidates are separated by 68 votes, .026 percent.

So now King County must by law do a recount, before they can send out any ballots. So ballots will not go in the mail to overseas military personnel, or anyone else, for at least another week, and the election is in one month, which means it is almost a sure thing that some people will be denied the right to vote simply because the County couldn't get the ballots out in time.

This is not really an indictment of King County. Yes, they should not have as much mail-in voting as they do; if they had less, they could have finished the initial counting earlier, so they could have started the recount earlier. But the real problem is the lack of time between the primary and general election, which the legislators in Olympia refuse to fix. slashdot.org

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