In Maine the new legislature leans toward improving civility in governing and is focused on reducing polarization between the major political party members (“Program makes Maine a leader in political civility,” Jan. 27). House Speaker Sara Gideon is promoting civility in governing and Senate Majority Leader Troy Jackson has assigned mixed seating to overcome the left and right mind set that is fostered by dividing seat assignments by party; seating by political party contributes to polarization and reduces cooperation.

The lack of cooperation of Congress and thus the failure to govern for the people has allowed corporation personhood to increasingly gain control of our government to the demise of prosperity and democracy for ordinary people. So now to achieve success in restoring democracy for the people, change must begin at the so-called grassroots level.  We must:

• Assure all adult citizens the right to vote with same-day, non-partisan registration.

• Open primary elections to all potential candidates without regard for political Party affiliation.

• Before the next census, populate a non-partisan, odd number of not less than nine citizens to create voting districts.

• Require winning a majority of the votes in order to be elected to any and all public offices, including the office of governor and state legislator.

Maine voters led the way in showing that ranked-choice voting works. Choice in voting is now spreading across the nation.

But our work isn’t finished.  It is once again up to us Maine voters to show the way. We need to individually urge our state representatives to pass legislation that will replace the word “plurality” with “majority” in our state constitution to open the way for ranked-choice voting for all offices.

 

Jim Chiddix

Waterville


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