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Furthermore …


Assuring votes are for people and not for parties

Voter suppression efforts have become so common that it’s reasonable to assume a straight-ticket voting bill filed for the upcoming legislative session is among the latest.

But Sen. Mike Delph’s proposal to remove party-line votes from Indiana ballots can’t be so easily dismissed. While some argue the intent is to favor a particular party – Delph’s Republican Party, in this case – election results don’t show a clear benefit for Indiana Republicans. Party leaders might have determined the same because Delph’s earlier attempts to pass such a bill have gone nowhere.

In Allen County, for example, the GOP would seem to benefit if its supporters have the option to cast a straight ticket. In the 2012 general election, straight-party GOP ballots totaled 32,999, while Democratic ballots came in at 25,062. In the last midterm election, 22,923 straight-party GOP ballots were cast, while just 9,752 Democratic votes were cast. Democratic ballots surpassed GOP ballots by a whisper-thin margin in the 2011 city election: 6,857 to 6,828.

For his part, Delph argues the legislation is about a more-informed electorate. “We should at least have to look at the name of the candidate before granting them power,” the Carmel lawmaker wrote in a recent tweet.

Tough to argue with that.