Monday, December 22, 2014

Voter Apathy in CA

Sacramento Bee columnist Dan Walters complains about the steadily declining California voter turnout. Instead of discussing the means of increasing participation, Walters should have investigated the reasons for voter apathy, and its implications.

State Senate President Kevin De Leon’s decision to close the Office of Oversight and Outcomes, in spite of four arrested/indicted/convicted state senators, may discourage voters, who feel that no matter whom they elect, business-as-usual pay-for-play corruption remains the norm in Sacramento.

Walters could have also referenced the political science, sociology, and economic research which confirms that low turnout is not as bad as high turnout from low-information voters. Indicted state senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco) received 300,000 votes in the 2014 primary from a staggering number of uninformed Californians.

Instead of trying to get more people to vote, local media and civic leaders need to focus on getting the dutiful voters to vet candidates and values effectively.

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