cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner
Recall petitions are all the rage these days. It is nearly impossible to drive anywhere in a built-up area without seeing a couple of people holding up a recall sign or a clipboard. I am admittedly more aware of these sightings this time around since the person to be recalled is a person for whom I voted. Typically I am just dismayed that we think we have to do something such as this when we have regular elections in which to make decisions. Ours is a representative form of government and if those in office don’t ‘represent’ our beliefs, we recall them, or attempt to recall them, during the normal election cycles.
I recognize that we each have the right to engage in this activity. I recognize that the requirements for recall elections have been set at relatively high marks so that the ‘right’ isn’t abused. I have never signed a recall petition and don’t plan to do so. I am politically attuned, so it isn’t out of lack of drive that I make this decision. I can be as disturbed by politicians as the next person, if not more so.
We elect people to serve for four-year terms in our state senate. That is a relatively short period of time in the grand scheme of things. We elect people to serve two-year terms in our state assembly. That is probably too short a time since these folks are required to be in constant re-election campaign mode.
Recall campaigns seldom result in any changes being decreed by the voters. They cost all taxpayers money since they result, typically, in special elections. At best, these attempts help people who are so enraged at something those elected officials have done or threatened to do that they just have to try the recall route to seek redress, to vent.
The effort being expended during these past few weeks is in stark contrast to the expected 20% voter turn-out for next Tuesday’s election when we’ll decide on a state Supreme Court justice race and several local races. I plan to ‘recall’ one or more people next Tuesday.
I wonder, but will never know, just how many of us who sign a recall petition voted in elections? It would be interesting if that were among the cross checks performed when the signatures are turned in to those whose job it is to verify that they are valid and that the people signing actually are in that district and qualified electors.
We are living in contentious times and many are enraged with the changes being made by those who are now in control of the legislative process. Maybe this will stimulate a larger turn- out of voters for next Tuesday. Maybe this will stimulate larger voter turn-out in future races for several years. Had we not become subjects in the national spotlight, would we be so engaged?