Time to reform voting in our nation
Did you know that Americans don't have a legally recognized right to vote? In fact, voting in this country is more difficult, and less effective than in almost every other developed democracy in the world. We must change this. Here's how we can:
Restore the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which the Supreme Court crippled in June 2013, in a 5-4 decision that has allowed multiple states to pass voter discrimination laws that have disenfranchised millions of Americans.
Immediately end gerrymandering, and fairly redistrict all of our states following the 2020 census results. Voters should choose their representatives; not the other way around.
Use the national popular vote to elect the president, so that every vote counts, and politicians campaign in all 50 states, rather than just a dozen. The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, of which Oregon is already a member, would do just that. Visit www.nationalpopularvote.com to learn more.
Institute automatic voter registration and automatic mail-in voting nationwide, like we've done successfully in Oregon for years; turn election day into election week, and make voting mandatory.
Implement STAR voting: Score Then Automatic Runoff. This method is simple, honest, equal and accurate, and allows voters to vote their conscience without wasting their vote. Learn more about STAR voting at www.starvoting.us.
Pass the American Anti-Corruption Act, ending legal corruption through rulings like Citizens United and donations from Super PACS, and create limits on campaign spending.
Expand the Courts. We need to balance the Supreme Court with justices who will support the above reforms, and we need to expand our federal courts to deal with increasingly overwhelming caseloads fairly and legally.
We must demand that our legislators pass these critical election reform, so that can finally fulfill our nation's promise of a government of and for the people.
'Applause' for Smith's stance on pandemic
I think we owe a debt of gratitude to the selfless patriots pushing back against COVID-19 restrictions, like Clackamas County's Tootie Smith.
As we all know, it's impossible to test a vaccine for COVID for effectiveness if there is no COVID around in the first place. In fact, news coverage of vaccine trials have noted that some companies have struggled to find populations (in Germany, for example) where their vaccines can be tested.
News coverage of trials in the USA have noted that the trials have been accelerated because placebo-receiving participants got the virus from their supportive communities.
And so, Madame Chairman, I thank you and your fellow family members and friends, who are self-sacrificing, willing to suffer heartbreak by Christmas, all just for the price of a turkey dinner.
And to think that you probably won't be taking the vaccine, either. You exemplify altruism in its most refined form.
Eudaly's comments were racist
I am appalled at Commissioner (Chloe) Eudaly's veiled racist comment about her loss to Mingus Mapes, that his victory does not reflect Portland values. There is no room in our city government for such coded racism. She should be publicly condemned by the Portland City Council.
Smith proves bad neighbor for Portland
As if there had not been enough bad press? for Portland this year. Tootie Smith, Clackamas County commissioner, flamboyantly challenging common sense pandemic guidance on Fox TV for a national audience is more than an embarrassment.
Brashly, boldly opposing our state governor's virus guidance might be expected from a woman who auctioned off a Glock as a fundraiser for one of her campaigns for county commissioner OK, there's a crazy uncle in every family, I get it. But I do resent an elected official in a neighboring county causing havoc? that may impact my home and well-being.
Tootie Smith, Clackamas County commissioner, did nothing to urge the paintball and bear mace equipped, flags-aflying trucks to stay home and keep from taking their in-your-face caravan to downtown Portland. For her to trash Portland now is rich when twice this year we've been subjected to roaring Clackamas County truck convoys in our city's downtown.
As far as I know, not a single Portland resident protested with rowdy zeal when Clackamas County refused to pay its share of the Ross Island Bridge rebuilding even though the bridge is a vital transportation link for Northwest Clackamas County.
Tootie Smith exhibits the kind of irresponsible behavior that is common as juvenile rebellion to authority; to see an elected official modeling antagonistic and self-centered resistance to public health advice in a pandemic is ?beyond the pale.
Simple measures to curb the spread and solidarity in the face of an infectious virus is in the common good. Obviously that's not to be expected from Tootie Smith. She is basically encouraging super-spreader events in her region.
Just how many ICU beds are there in Clackamas County? to accept the COVID patients generated by a coming virus spike? ?Does she assume Portland can take them in?
Inga Fisher Williams
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