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State of the Debate
George Pyle
George Pyle has been a newspaper writer in Kansas, Utah, Upstate New York, and now Utah again, for more than 30 years - most of it as an editorial writer and columnist. Now on his second tour of duty on The Salt Lake Tribune Editorial Board, he has also done a stretch as a talk radio host, published a book on the ongoing flaws of U.S.agricultural policy and, in 1998, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing. His most active bookmarks are Andrew Sullivan, Christopher Hitchens and Tina Brown. And he still thinks the Internet can be used for intelligent conversation and uplifting ideas.

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(Lennie Mahler | The Salt Lake Tribune) Gail Miller speaks to the media in a press conference announcing a deal between Count My Vote and lawmakers at the Capitol on Sunday, March 2, 2014.
Extention of remarks: The Count My Vote deal ...

Count My Vote compromise is good for everyone — Salt Lake Tribune Editorial

"Utah’s political leaders have apparently cooked up a compromise that would allow the state’s political parties to keep their antiquated and exclusionary caucus-and-convention system on the books, while creating a way for the public at large to have a say in the nominating process while their say still matters.

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"It is a good deal. The Legislature should approve it. The governor should sign it. The people should use it. ..."

Count My Vote deal gets roughed up, but advances — Robert Gehrke | The Salt Lake Tribune

"Defenders of Utah’s caucus system for nominating candidates pummeled a deal struck over the weekend between legislators and organizers of the Count My Vote ballot initiative, calling it an unconstitutional affront to the First Amendment and comparing it to bloodshed in the streets of Kiev. ..."

— House Committee Advances Caucus Compromise Bill — Bryan Schott | Utah Policy

"Begrudgingly. Hesitantly. Squeamishly. That’s the way forward for many Utah lawmakers as they consider the new version of SB 54, which crafts a compromise to keep Utah’s caucus system while also allowing a direct primary path to the ballot. ..."

[These next two pieces refer to the original version of SB54, which was introducted to thwart Count My Vote, not compromise with it.]

In defense of SB54 and the Utah caucus system — State Sen. Lyle Hillyard | For The Logan Herald-Journal

" ... I would like to speak in defense of the caucus system. This process of people gathering to discuss issues and elect neighborhood representatives who best represent the values of a specific political platform creates both a vetting and an accountability system that does not exist in a direct primary. ..."

SB 54 is an Abuse of Power — Kim Burningham | For Utah Policy

" ... Unfortunately, some legislators seem jealous of the public’s right to intervene; ‘We know best; the power is ours only,’ they seem to be saying. ..."

Elections in Utah: Opponents in the Boxing Ring — Pamela Openshaw | For The Provo Daily Herald

" ... Regardless of what Count My Vote tells you — the exaggerated faults of the caucus system, the lauded but unsupportable "bennies" of Count My Vote, the endorsements of people you thought you trusted — remember that CMV means you vote against delegation. You vote either for countless hours of your personal time, or blindness in the voting booth. ..."

Another alternative for caucus system — Todd Seifert | The St. George Spectrum

"I get a kick out of both sides as they lay out their argument for or against the Count My Vote campaign. Both sides see themselves as battling against people who have more influence. ..."

Caucuses vs. Primaries — On The Level | Box Elder News Journal

" .. It doesn’t matter whether you agree with or even like the petition. The citizen-driven process has begun and the heavy hand of the government should not stand in the way of the people. It is my position that the question should be asked of the voters and not skated around by politicians before the people’s voice can even be heard. ..."



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