Am I the only one surprised at how little reaction there is on this group to
the outcome of the APS voting? Only 19% of APS membership took the time to
vote---I am sure it will far outpace many of the local school board
elections and millage issues being decided today---but it's still the
highest percentage in many years. And so far, it seems like one big snooze
(Victor being the exception) in response. Can't help but wonder why.
That leads to the main question I am posing: should candidate advertising
be banned, as Peter McCann has proposed in the latest issue of AP?
While I am certainly open to hearing opposing viewpoints, I find it hard to
believe that a ban would stimulate more people to vote. There may always be
fears of someone "buying" an election, but advertising serves a useful
purpose and I see no reason to forbid it in future elections. To be sure,
unless statistically-accurate polling is done, we'll probably never know
what impact (if any) the ads in AP, Linn's, and elsewhere had on the
results. And certainly, many of the candidates did much to promote their
positions and candidacies through other means, too; I found the written
summaries in AP to be very enlightening, for example.
I must admit that my view is colored by working in a legislative office,
where we know how important advertising can be to winning an election.
Still, I hope that APS members think very carefully about the possible
consequences if asked in the future to adopt Peter's proposal.
On the other hand, I applaud his interest in having future ballots sent to a
neutral third party for tabulating. While I have no doubt about the
Society's integrity, I have long felt a little uneasy about returning a
"secret" ballot---with my name and Society number attached.
Anyway, congratulations to all who were elected, and special thanks to Lloyd
for his quick posting of the results.