Geographical Prejudice

 

Prejudice, its many layers unfolded, invariably yield an influence unhealthy to society. More than the nostalgic lampoon of quirky Americana in a Hollywood taint, geographical prejudice, at its extreme, has been a combative divide between regions of our society with often tragic results. Surprising as it would seem, the Democrat Party has made geographical prejudice a hallmark of their political agenda.

Much like Ranked Choice Voting, which by design circumvents the will of the rural voter, the Maine Democrat Party has introduced a bill that would give away its electoral votes to larger more populated states, in a first step move to eliminate the Electoral College. The so called “National Popular Vote Interstate Compact” is the means by which Democrats hope to give away Maine’s four electoral votes.

Eleven states and the “unstate”, but statist, Washington D.C. have joined the compact. All eleven states are Democrat strongholds, with California and New York the power brokers. In essence electorally, Maine Democrats want California to have their cake and eat Maine’s too.

The Electoral College was designed to insure that all regions of the Nation have an impact on the election of the President. If Democrats have their way and abolish the Electoral College, the Presidency would be decided by two States, California and New York. But Democrats want to take the travesty further with the interstate compact which could take the electoral votes of rural states and give them to urban states.

Yes, there is a pattern here. Democrats have made no secret of their disdain for the “backwards” beliefs, morals, and ideals of rural America. As with RCV, their aim is to silence rural voters by eliminating the structures that protect the integrity of those votes. This goal undermines the fundamental tenets of the Republic for fair representation.

-Andy Torbett

Of Pendulums, Power, and the People

 

A system of checks and balances. This is our Republic. A government for the people, by the people.

While the musical strands of Schoolhouse Rock dance through our memories, its easy to forget that all the participants within the Republic are subject to these checks and balances, including the people by and for which the government derives it’s power. Yes, even the citizen cannot have Liberty without responsibility.

The citizenry without checks upon it’s will, or more specifically, it’s whim, face the tendency to regress toward anarchy. Not willing to inhibit the individual liberty of any free citizen but keenly aware to guard against mob rule, the Founders rejected Pure or Direct Democracy in favor of a Republic. Benjamin Franklin warned in our national infancy that we were, “ A Republic, if we can keep it.”

The “keep it” is the diligence to the responsibilities and burdens of Liberty. The maintaining of checks and balances. For it’s dual purpose, a balance and check is clearly reflected in the Electoral College.

Without the Electoral College, elections would be decided by heavily populated urban areas and rural America would be ignored. By design, this electoral system insures that all geographical areas of the Republic would be represented equally. The Founding Fathers also knew, by their careful study of history, that the cities were more susceptible to the frequent popular swings of the political pendulum.

Those who can conjure the grievance, inflame the crowds, and ride the populace swell of emotion hold the power in a Direct Democracy. This is why those in political power wish to abolish the Electoral College. Like with the gerrymandered voting system of Ranked Choice Voting, it is a thinly veiled attempt to silence the vote and voice of rural America.

-Andy Torbett

To Us, The Republic

 

Disappointment is the understated term of choice at the news that Bruce Poliquin will not continue his challenge to the travesty of Ranked Choice Voting (RCV). If need be, the voters of the 2nd Congressional District (CD2), who voted in a strong majority against the RCV, were keen to have their interests represented, to it’s fruition, at the highest levels of court in our Nation. This is not to be.

This voter expected my Representative to adhere to the oaths he has taken. This writer expressed publicly the duty ascribed to a public servant within a Republic to do so. But here we are, expectations still pining.

The counter to these arguments is that it is the dime and the reputation of the aforementioned servant that is spent and sullied in the public eye. It is his choice. To this, there can be no argument.

The legal expenses are burdensome. The media bias is insurmountable. The solution must come from a grassroots reckoning.

For now, the 1st Congressional District enjoys two Representatives at the expense of CD2. Yet, this is not the time for rural Maine to withdraw towards the temptation of apathy and sullen indifference at the repeated political slights from the elitist south. It is time for rural Maine to regroup, unite, and win back our vote.

An adage this writer has rejected on principle becomes a truth, in earnest, for the days to come. Until Jared Golden can win a “one person-one vote” election, instead of a manipulated, discordant violation of voter’s rights, he is quite literally not our Representative. It falls now to us, the citizens of this great Republic in the Sovereign State of Maine, to repeal Ranked Choice Voting!

-Andy Torbett

Spoiler Alert

 

We’ve come some distance from where we started. The destination has none of the trappings advertised and, it seems, we are nowhere near the place we were promised to be. This was not in the brochure.

With the CD 2 race breaking records for the amount of money spent, Mainers are wondering, while standing knee deep in all the residual left over from campaign mud slinging, why they find themselves burdened with more of everything that RCV promised to eliminate. The grandiose, Utopian promise of a kinder, gentler, majority approved, and fiscally spartan campaigns have proven to be as fraudulent as the “everyone-gets-a-trophy” voting platform it’s built on. But when have Utopian promises ever come true?

The fundamental premise of RCV is flawed and its genesis is suspect at best. The idea that any other candidate then the two major party candidates are spoiler candidates is bereft of any respect for the right of the individual. Furthermore, the idea that there should only be two final choices flies in the face of the tenets of our Republic, which promises that any person who qualifies may aspire to public office. RCV smacks of old world European socialism, which grants the people opportunity to chose between two government sanctioned parties.

The frustration with “spoiler candidates” is not new. Republicans were livid with Ross Perot for what they perceived was a sabotage to President George H.W. Bush’s second term and paved the way for the Clinton machine. No matter what side of the political divide cries foul, the Republic has always afforded an avenue for all voices to call for power and that the candidate who emerges from the din with a majority, of whatever variety, wins.

Maine has even had a spoiler candidate for a Governor. Angus King somehow emerged from the shrouds of spoilage to gain the plurality of votes. With Governor King, for this conservative, the temptation to try and deligitimize a duly elected official based on the current political climate is real, but in fairness, that’s left to a Trump crazed media and…Ranked Choice Voting.

Its still more than ironic that those who decry the challenges to RCV as an assault on the voter’s confidence in the voting process spent millions in an effort to erode the voter’s confidence in the voting process in order to pass RCV. One person one vote, its that simple. Giving a little child an unearned trophy to take away the sting of losing is a bad way to raise children and an even worse way to elect our government.

By Andy Torbett