Re: Should candidates challenge elections?

From: Ron Crane <voting_at_lastland_dot_net>
Date: Tue May 17 2005 - 19:07:27 CDT

On May 17, 2005, at 4:01 PM, Stephanie Frank Singer wrote:

> I'll put my two cents in for random. And we should make it clear what
> "random" really means. Otherwise people often mistake "random" for
> "mostly evenly distributed" which is not a synonym at all!

Yes. The technique for random choice needs to be laid out in detail,
lest those making the choice decide, like some Ohio officials during
the presidential recount, that the selection of precincts by mental
divination is "random".

> It's a mistake to rely on candidates. Consider Joe Hoeffel, who ran
> against Specter in PA for Senate in 2004. He would have a lot to gain
> if fraud were proved, as he would either be a Senator now, or folks
> would have to recognize that he came from nowhere to be neck-and-neck
> with a well-established incumbent, in which case he would be
> considered a candidate to reckon with (which he isn't). But it's not
> worth risking the "troublemaker," "sore loser" labels that he faces
> for complaining. It's not realistic to depend on candidates (or
> anyone else) to work against their own perceptions of their own
> self-interest.

Yes. Remember "Sore Loserman"? We absolutely cannot depend upon

> Here's another tack: not only do I, as a PA resident, have an
> interest in the integrity of PA elections, I have an interest in the
> integrity of each other state's elections, because of Amendment 14,
> Section 2 of the Constitution. If enough voters were disenfranchised
> in, say, Texas, then the Consitution guarantees that the Texas
> delegations to the Electoral College and the US House of Reps should
> both shrink, which gives my electors and reps more clout!

I'm very curious about how courts would interpret actions taken under
section 2. Well, actually I'm not *that* curious. I'd rather avoid the
whole spectacle leading up to its invocation.


> On May 17, 2005, at 6:40 PM, Ron Crane wrote:
>> Whatever the process, it has to be transparent, established before
>> the elections in which it is applied, and either (a) completely
>> unbiased (random) or (b) open to *all* partisan inputs, including
>> those of any member of the public. We cannot rely on the candidates
>> to do the job. Just off the cuff, I prefer publicly-witnessed random
>> choice, since it's easy for the public to understand and to verify,
>> and it's not so open to the exercise of discretion, and it's not so
>> open to manipulation via uneven (or unevenly-applied) bureaucratic
>> obstacles, such as application fees, etc.
>> -R
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Received on Tue May 31 23:17:40 2005

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