PR Party

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FairVote.Org (The Center for Voting and Democracy) published a list of modern democracies and the U.S. Isn't on it!

Posted by Pete Healey on May 20, 2012 at 9:15 PM Comments comments (0)

Copy and paste the link below and find the list of 35 most advanced countries and their electoral systems. What the FairVote people specifically mean when they say "PR" is a particular form of proportional elections, since there are several, called Party List PR. It's probably the simplest and fairest form, depending on lots of local factors of course.

Another Reason to Change the Redistricting System, and the Whole Election System

Posted by Pete Healey on May 15, 2012 at 12:50 AM Comments comments (0)

As if there aren't enough problems with the redistricting issue and the corrupt way that candidates are chosen and elected to the New York State Legislature, a special election back in March for an empty seat in the New York State Senate hasn't resulted in a winner yet! If memory serves, the seat was vacated because the incumbent was convicted of official corruption. Here's a story about a race that's still too close to call, two months later:

Hey Democrats, You Say You Want Campaign Finance Reform?

Posted by Pete Healey on May 7, 2012 at 3:25 PM Comments comments (0)

Hey Democrats, if you want to reform the electoral process to make it more fair and democratic, knock this crap off and people may begin to take your other efforts more seriously.

" Green Party Congressional candidate Joseph Diaferia, running in New York’s 16th District, has apparently turned back a challenge to his nominating petitions. The campaign staff of U.S. Representative Eliot Engel (D-N...Y) mounted the challenge to Diaferia’s petition on grounds that a minor clerical inconsistency rendered said petitions null and void. However, in a ruling issued on Thursday, May 3, 2012, the New York State Board of Elections (BOE) determined that Diaferia’s petitions were, in their entirety, valid and properly prepared. "

Public Financing of Elections- An Idea Whose Time Isn't Here?

Posted by Pete Healey on April 27, 2012 at 10:55 PM Comments comments (0)

Now the "reformers" in the progressive political world would have us believe that public financing of elections will solve all the problems of governance. Basically, they're just working off the idea that some levelling of the campaign finance scheme will give the Democrats and advantage over the Republicans. For these progressives, that's all that ails the political world, too many Republicans. I happen to think there are too many Republicans AND too many Democrats, but who am I to say? Around New York State, more than 3 million registered voters refuse to identify with either of the parties in this "two party system", yet only one out of 212 state legislators is not either a (D) or an (R) (and he's so closely identified with the (R) there are few who notice he isn't actually one of them).

This little campaign of theirs has been engineered by the Democrats in Albany, and all the advantages that accrue will go mainly to Sheldon Silver, the leader of the Democrats in the State Assembly. That's only if they get any kind of result, which isn't assured. Of course a public financing scheme would leave the administration of this "reform" in the hands of the ultra-partisan Board of Election, both at the State and the County levels. That isn't encouraging if you happen to be neither a (D) nor an (R), and the scheme will provide only a minority of public monies to be added to private donations, so the more access you have to private money the better chance you have, just like now. What change will that bring, I ask you? Well, it's the kind of thing that Democrats do to give themselves an advantage over Republicans, and they're really the only people who will benefit in any way.

Insider's Game in Albany? Who Will "Trade Up" Next?

Posted by Pete Healey on April 15, 2012 at 11:30 AM Comments comments (0)

The following link is to an editorial in the Kingston Daily Freeman decrying the way that outgoing members of the "dysfunctional legislature" in Albany are being appointed to important executive posts in the Cuomo administration and state government generally.

Jack Mc Eneny was co-chair of the Legislative Task Force on Reapportionment and Demographic Research (whatever that means!), in common parlance the "Redistricting Task Force", which did such an awful job that a federal court stepped in to completely replace their work with its own. He has announced that he will not seek another term as legislator, and so has the current Assembly Majority Leader Ron Canestrari. Both of these gentlemen live and work in the Capitol  District and if they're appointed next spring to important executive positions in state government, can we then say "the fix was in"? 

We've Been Too Busy to Write Entries Here...

Posted by Pete Healey on April 12, 2012 at 7:05 PM Comments comments (2)

We've been busy with our work in promoting the concepts of proportional representation, and that work has kept us away from this blog for some weeks now. We have every intention of returning to regular posts, any minute now, because the redistricting battle is now pretty much over and its victims are spilling out of the halls of power as we speak. There is much to say about the gentlemen who have recently announced their retirement from the state legislature, particularly the co-chair of LATFOR Jack McEneny, and we intend to say it. Give us another day or two to gather more information about the insider's game that is currentlly under way to replace the also-retiring Majority Leader of the State Assembly. We have also been heard on area radio stations and have attended several Occupy events in an effort to gauge their understanding of current politics and their readiness to engage in proportional politics and discussions. The reports on those fronts, I'm afraid, will not be encouraging. And lastly the local effort to bring proportional politics to New Paltz is just about completely lost and a full airing of the whys and wherefores of that debacle is due (hint: progressives prefer the two party system to a multi-party one!). Just a little more patience and you'll have the full scoop.

It Ain't Over 'til a Federal Court Says It's Over

Posted by Pete Healey on March 28, 2012 at 6:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Here's a link to an article, out today, suggesting that the state legislative lines recently approved by the legislature and governor in their usual corrupt way may not be the last word on state legislative redistricting this year:

The Governor Sells Out, and a Federal Court Weighs In

Posted by Pete Healey on March 19, 2012 at 10:00 PM Comments comments (0)

Less than a week after Governor Ceasar Cuomo ("We came, we saw a problem we fixed a problem") sold everything to get the budget he wanted, a federal court has declared an end to the congressional map stalemate and has imposed its own version. Here's a link:


Apart from some court battles on side issues and one ugly lawsuit by the biggest losers in this process, the Senate Democrats, this redistricting issue is settled at least for this election cycle. Still to come is a battle over the constitutional amendment that has been proposed to change the way redistricting is done. This fight could last a couple more years. Maybe it's time to try to wake up the Greens, again, and ask them to join us.

Here's the Court's contribution to the Redistricting Issue

Posted by Pete Healey on March 7, 2012 at 8:45 AM Comments comments (0)

A judge has proposed the following congressional districts, if the legislature can't come to agreement on its own plan by March 15th. What are the odds that the legislature will now come to terms, even money I'd say. Have a look at what the judge has proposed and see that this would result in a free-for-all and nobody (read the Dems and the Reps) wants that.

A Court Must Now Decide What Congressional Districts in New York Will Look Like

Posted by Pete Healey on March 1, 2012 at 8:05 AM Comments comments (0)

Here's a link to a  map that has been provided to a court by the Democrats with proposed congressional districts for the next ten years in New York State. Both Democrats and Republicans have been required to provide their proposals, on which they couldn't agree among themselves, to a court which must now make a quick decision.