Blogging Bayport Alameda

June 5, 2014

Rock-ish the vote

Filed under: Alameda, Election — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:05 am

Yeah, so there was an election on Tuesday, did everyone vote?  I can’t blame you if you forgot.   I nearly forgot about it as well.  Because I sat on my absentee ballot for so long I didn’t have time to drop it in the mail so instead walked it to my precinct.  Let’s just say there were a lot more poll workers than actual voters and leave it at that.

I try not to be too dismissive of elections since I feel privileged to have the right to be dismissive of elections, but it’s really hard to get too excited about an election where half the races on ballot are folks running completely unopposed.  While I get that it’s hard to unseat an incumbent, I feel like if incumbency is the be all end all for certain races (Assessor, Sheriff, District Attorney) it feels pointless to even go through the exercise of voting for these seats.   Or make those seats limited by term.  You get one, let’s say six year term, that way incumbency is no longer the de facto determinant  of who gets to fill that seat.

Anyway, it’s rather interesting that there were some reporter type folks hanging on to every second of these election results since, honestly, there was nothing that exciting that couldn’t wait until morning.  I mean, were you really really worried about the results of any of the Alameda County races?  Yeah, me neither.

And I had nearly forgotten that our very own City Council member Tony Daysog was in the running for a Congressional seat.   One thing to say about that effort: he didn’t come in last:

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Maybe this is Tony Daysog’s way of keeping his name out there in the sphere of recognition to challenge Marie Gilmore in a Mayoral run.

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18 Comments

  1. Even if the primary on Tuesday was “boring,” voting is still important. And being “dismissive” about it is part of the reason our political institutions and processes are all in deep distress…

    At the Annual Meeting of the League of Women Voters of Alameda this past Saturday, our speaker was the Honorable State Senator Loni Hancock.

    She addressed the negative results of having too much wealth and power–including political power through the ability to “buy” elections and public officials’ votes through massive and multiple untracked contributions–concentrated in the hands of too few (people and special interests like corporations). She mentioned several ways in which the growing wealth and income inequalities damage what she called our “fragile” democracy, which also suffers when people disparage or dismiss the importance of voting.

    What Hancock was arguing was that democracy is far from automatic and nurturing it takes real vigilance, care, commitment, and effort–from all of us.

    I don’t have any quick solutions for the major inequities in our society these days–institutionalized racism that has permeated our culture for 350 years, income inequality, long-term poverty, the under-representation of large portions of pour population at all levels of government, government gridlock, failing schools and infrastructure, and more.

    But I do know that one of the most elemental steps I can take to effect a change in any of these areas is to cast an informed ballot at every election, no matter what else is going on (or not) in my life.

    Comment by Jon Spangler — June 5, 2014 @ 8:15 am

  2. Yeah, fabulous election. Bonta or a Republican? “New York abstains, courteously.”

    Comment by Denise Shelton — June 5, 2014 @ 8:23 am

  3. 1:

    “Special interests like corporations”

    ===========================================================================================

    Corporations have too much power in Washington, but one wonders what did she have to say about the special interest that owns this town? Hint: it’s not a corporation.

    Comment by dave — June 5, 2014 @ 8:50 am

  4. The best thing about this election: I heard Leland Yee came in third for Secretary of State! Damn-he beat the guy I voted for!

    Great thing about democracy..everyone gets a vote, no matter how uninformed they are…

    Comment by vigi — June 5, 2014 @ 9:33 am

  5. Prediction: Leland Yee’s result will give Stewart Chen the “courage” to run again.

    Comment by dave — June 5, 2014 @ 9:55 am

  6. The need to consistently educate the public about why they should vote, who they should vote for and what value they offer, et. is critical to social stability. I’d like to know of those who became US citizens in the past five years, how many of them voted? If they miss two voting opportunities, their citizenship could be taken away. Make voting mandatory, while allowing people to vote for who they want.

    Comment by William — June 5, 2014 @ 3:32 pm

  7. walked my absentee ballot to the polls also.

    how about if people don’t vote they agree to shut the F up and not complain? It’s hypocrisy to not vote and then complain. Bad enough we are largely a nation of ignorant sheep, but we have to endure each others’ minimally informed opinions because of the 1st Amendment gives us the right to be lazy and then hold other people to a standard we don’t meet. Jury duty is linked to voter registration, but I have heard it is also linked to data banks of drivers licenses. That could be a disincentive for some. Jury duty is loathsome, necessary. I had a brother in law who for years bragged about not voting because it supposedly doesn’t make a difference, has no impact etc. His impact was all negative all the time. dope smoking wanker.

    Australia is apparently one of 23 countries with mandatory voting. This article says only ten countries do enforcement and I guess Australia is one of them, but it seems a bit random.
    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-23810381
    Australia also has complete ranked choice ballots with the option to rank every candidate, not just 3. I wonder if they have “none of the above” which would seem to soften the blow for folks who object to mandatory voting. With regard to vigi’s comment in 4 about uninformed voters, would mandatory voting only increase those numbers?

    I do not like the top two ballot system which has recently been instituted in Ca. It guarantees there will be no third parties in general elections with greatest turn out. In fact we need proportional representation or some means to give greater voice to minority opinions, yes even libertarians.

    Comment by MI — June 5, 2014 @ 5:53 pm

  8. Women have only had the right to vote since 1919, less than 100 years. Women need to vote in every election just because they can.

    Comment by Linda on Otis St. — June 5, 2014 @ 5:59 pm

  9. #5 Who would vote for Stewart Chen or finance his run? I am sorry I wouldn’t and if I needed a chiropractor, which I haven’t for years, he would probably be the last person I would go to.

    Comment by Joseph — June 5, 2014 @ 6:40 pm

  10. “Fear of the mob is a superstitious fear.” –George Orwell

    Comment by stu lake — June 5, 2014 @ 6:52 pm

  11. walked my ballot to the blue bin because I like being a lazy ignorant sheep, and holding other people to standards I can’t meet…I’m your dope smoking wanker brother-in-law and your my b-I-l silly bitch.

    Comment by Jack — June 5, 2014 @ 7:34 pm

  12. I’d vote for Chen if I could drag him out of the green bin and if I’d bother voting, because he’d be a super honest wonk.

    Comment by Jack — June 5, 2014 @ 7:48 pm

  13. 19th, worst constitution amendment. Women need to be barefoot and pregnant and leave the important stuff to Iron men, Mark my words.

    Comment by Jack — June 5, 2014 @ 7:53 pm

  14. Sounds to me like Jack was at the Pasta Pelican tonight….

    Comment by J.E.A. — June 5, 2014 @ 8:10 pm

  15. Comment by . — June 5, 2014 @ 8:13 pm

  16. Revise my 13 above 17th was worse than 19th. All 19th did was give husbands two votes., while 17th gives us senators for life.

    Comment by Jack — June 5, 2014 @ 9:46 pm

  17. 13. yuk, yuk, yuk. I’ve got plenty of opinions Jack, but if we had only one vote between us at my house I’d give it to my wife. She runs circles around me, even barefoot.

    Linda 8 makes a great point which is that women who don’t vote are really forgetting their history. Our low voter turn out is a national disgrace especially with the way the word “freedom” is so over used and abused.

    Comment by MI — June 6, 2014 @ 8:20 am

  18. In Alameda County over 60% vote by mail now. When you see no one at the polls, it often means that they have already voted. Those I talk to who say they don’t vote because they don’t know about the candidates or the issues get pointed to the League’s SmartVoter.org web site which tells you where you go to vote, lots about the candidates, who post their bios and campaign statements, more than you probably want to know about the ballot measures, etc. The League has now partnered with MapLight, which has even MORE data for the voter. We need to stay civically engaged; exercise our voting power, and educate ourselves on the issues ’cause if we don’t we give up democracy (small d).

    Comment by Kate Quick — June 11, 2014 @ 8:27 am


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