IPFS Dave Hodges

More About: Politics: General Activism

Fixing Elections

Over the past several months, I have identified several areas of concern which are greatly troubling me. These critical areas include voter fraud, the fact that many transnational corporations are using the government as their personal broker, the engagement of our country in illegal wars, illegal immigration issues, the education debacle, the devastation being wrought by the various trade agreements that Congress has approved, the undue influence that the United Nations is presently having on American governmental policy, political corruption, the systematic loss of American sovereignty and the gutting of our civil liberties in the name of fighting terrorism.

It is now time to begin to look for solutions for some of the previously identified problems which are threatening America. Subsequently, this particular editorial proposes some specific governmental solutions for one of the most serious problems confronting America.

Presently, we have an election process that cannot be fully trusted. If America is going to implement an honest electoral process, then it is imperative that elections be administrated at the state and local level and the regulation of elections must extend beyond the illegal manipulation by federal judges and federal bureaucrats. Further, the gerrymandering abuses perpetrated by self-serving politicians (i.e., judges, members of congress, etc.) needs to be rolled back in order to protect the integrity of the election process. The federal government has unconstitutionally usurped control in matters of district boundaries, electoral procedures, and the regulation of campaign activities. This disturbing trend must be reversed.

All laws which violate the original election laws of this country must be repealed. For example, the Voting Rights Act, the Federal Election Campaign Act, and its 1974 amendments should be repealed. Further, the Federal Election Commission should be abolished because the regulation of voting and elections is mandated to the states.

Both the Democrats and Republicans have manipulated various election laws in an attempt to eliminate political competition from viable third parties and their respective candidates. If we are truly going to live in a democratic republic, it is imperative that every American citizen should have the right to seek public office in accordance with the qualifications set forth in federal and state constitutions. Additional restrictions (e.g., obligations governing candidate eligibility and campaign procedures), imposed by self-serving partisan politicians, unconstitutionally undermines the fairness and accountability of the American political system and these practices need to be outlawed.

Under the Constitution, all candidates must be treated equally. Therefore the designation, "Major Party", should be illegal as it promotes preferential treatment for two of the political parties. This special status gives an unfair advantage to Republican and Democratic candidates by providing ballot access, while requiring others for the same office to gather petition signatures or meet other, more rigorous criteria. The present election laws are clearly slanted in favor of maintaining the status quo of the two party system. If America is to truly consider all political points of view, all Americans need to be granted equal access to the political process.

Defeating one's political opponent is arguably one of the main objectives of politics. However, the power of government should not be abused in order to strengthen the oligarchy which permeates through and controls the present two-party system. Therefore, I am also calling for a repeal of all federal campaign finance laws (i.e. McCain-Feingold) due to their violation of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. McCain and Feingold are simply trying to eliminate political competition.

The rampant problems with the voting machines have been well-documented. In order to avoid the great potential which presently exists for election fraud, I am strongly urging an end to electronic or mechanical voting processes and a return to the manual counting process (i.e., paper ballot) overseen by, and accountable to, voters who reside in each precinct where the votes are cast. If Americans cannot trust that their elections truly represent the will of the people, then we will witness the destruction of the most important reason to vote in our elections. It should be noted that in the 2006 midterm elections, less than half of all eligible voters actually cast their vote. If America's participation in the election process continues to wane, we will cease to remain a Democratic Republic. .

The election process is the cornerstone to the preservation of Republic. It is imperative that the Americans have faith in the integrity of the election process. If we, the American public, accept anything less, then we will cease to be the America that we know and love.