One of the political parties has sued the State of Texas over the legislative voting rule change that prohibits straight–party ballot marking. I find this very misguided. I personally think straight–party voting should be unconstitutional. I am proud to say I have never voted a straight ticket. I have always marked my ballots individually.
Straight-ticket voting came about by the influence of political parties who wanted to insure blind loyalty to their ticket. This practice has dwindled to just eight states (Alabama, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Texas). Now, Texas has removed itself from the list. Since the middle of the 19th century parties that were forming in the U.S. and in the states were pushing straight-ticket voting to bully citizens into voting for every one of their candidates. The “secret ballot” came into existence nationally about the time Garfield was elected President. Parties began pushing the individual to go into the private voting booth and mark “straight party.” Since around 1960, there has been a movement away from straight-ticket voting in all states, and as mentioned there are only seven left.
I applaud our state legislature for banning straight-ticket voting, which became effective this year. I say it is unfortunate that there are those who want to return to the shady practice of pushing voters to “vote straight ticket.”
This is my personal belief and if you disagree, I respect that. However, I get to put my opinion here, so that is what I am doing.
Quote: “Necessity may be the mother of invention, but laziness is the father.” Anonymous.
Thank you for listening. We want you to be proud of your county government.
BOB HURLEY is the Atascosa County Judge. You may e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.