In the 2002 primary election, an alternative voting initiative will appear on the ballot that really should be called the "Election Mishmash System." The authors of this initiative want to mandate that a candidate surpass a particular percentage, in this case 50 percent, in order to win an election. Abraham Lincoln (Republican) didn't pass 50 percent in 1860, nor did Harry Truman (Democrat) in 1948 to name just a couple of examples of plurality percentage winners (President George W. Bush didn't even get a plurality, let alone a majority, but the Electoral College System is a different matter).
This initiative is a zany Rube Goldberg-type system in which voters are going to need a scorecard to figure out who the winner is from convoluted ballots in which the voters can pick more than one candidate for a position. The present system of choosing a single candidate and whoever gets the most votes wins should remain.
The other initiative to watch out for is the one trying to move legislative sessions to the Mat-Su Borough - trying to replace Juneau as the capital, again. As Alaska's Democratic nominee for the U.S. House of Representatives last year, I spent a lot of time campaigning in Juneau and was very impressed with the splendor and beauty of Alaska's capital, especially the vibrant spirit of the people, realizing that Alaska is served very well by the capitol being in Juneau.
When I go on the campaign trail in 2002, I will definitely speak out strongly against these two ill-advised initiatives.
Clifford Mark Greene