mad anthony

Rants, politics, and thoughts on politics, technology, life,
and stuff from a generally politically conservative Baltimoron.

Friday, October 29, 2004

Choices, choices...

I got my "specimen ballot" from Baltimore City. This is the first time I've ever voted in Baltimore City (and if my plans to buy a house in the next year or so work out, possibly my last). I've always voted absentee in NJ when I was in college. I was living with my parents the year after I graduated college, and I didn't bother voting last year.

Coming from Somerset County, NJ (a mostly Republican county in a fairly Democrat state), the ballot was pretty balanced. So it's wierd for me to look at a Baltimore City ballot, which except for President doesn't have a whole lot of choices. For example, the President of City Council position has two parties on the ballot - Democrat or Green. (I'm seriously thinking of voting Green, just because I have no desire to vote for a Dem, and I think the Green candidate has as much chance of winning the election as I do of winning the lottery - and I haven't bought a lotto ticket in about 3 years). Circuit Court judge has 5 choices - for 5 positions. There are a bunch of ballot questions that I've never thought about like changing the name of the Baltimore City Personel Department to the Department of Human Resources and giving loans to such Baltimore institutions as the Walthers Art Gallery and giving health care to the Homeless (brilliant. Health care funded by real estate taxes as a benefit to people who by definition don't pay real estate taxes. I think I may vote against them all, just to spite the city.

One other observation - the Greens have had a hell of a time getting Nader on the ballot. (He did make it on the Maryland ballot though) - and the Republicans may have done more than the Greens to get him on the ones he is on. So it's pretty interesting that the other fringe parties - the Libertarians and the Constitution Party (whose candidate graduated from my alma matter), for example, seem to be on most state's ballots - they are on MD, they are on the controviersial Ohio ballots and a student employee who works in my department mentions that they were on the NJ absentee ballot. Interesting that these parties seem to be able to get on ballots, but don't get nearly the attention that the Greens seem to. I'm not sure what that proves, except possibly that a lot of people don't like Nader much these days and that the Libs and Constitutionals have a loyal base.


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