Non-partisan elections? Open primaries? Drunk voting!

The Public Commission on the Oregon Legislature made recommendations to make all legisilative races non-partisan. First politicians don’t want to be held accountable for their votes, now they don’t want to be held accountable to their political parties. Let’s try secret balloting next .

The Panel also recommended changing to open primaries where any voter can vote for any candidate of any political party. Some hoped that this change would help increase voter turnout — especially independents (a way to beat that double majroity rule?)

Panel member, Barbara Karmel, was quoted as saying “”I believe it is the job of this commission to change the story of the Legislature” (no signs of power hungry citizens here).

The panel also recmmended that legislators be sober when voting. This idea was recommended by Steve Doell of Crime Victims United after being hit with second-hand beer breath during the 2005 Session. The one unfortunate aspect of prohibiting lawmakers from being drunk during voting is that they will have no excuse for their off-the-wall legislation they pass and come to regret in the morning (i.e. 24-hour school speed limits).

Are these the golden suggesstions that will improve our Legislature? What ideas do you suggest?