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Letter: SB54 necessary to avoid stultifying of intra-party politics
First Published Mar 18 2014 01:01 am • Last Updated Mar 18 2014 03:28 pm

If former Utah legislator Chris Herrod is "disheartened" by Count My Vote and SB54 for ignoring basic constitutional principles ("Count My Vote/SB54 is a step away from liberty, Opinion, March 10), then I’m glad he’s a "former" legislator.

The basic constitutional principles he champions have been employed with stifling effectiveness in Utah, which has practically eliminated checks and balances vital to our system of government. Allowing access to elected office by direct primaries is necessary to prevent the stultifying, insular dynamics of intra-party politics from usurping elections by institutions never contemplated when this country was founded.

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Without SB54, no registered member of any political party can associate themselves with their party of choice as a candidate for election without abiding by party rules and processes. First, where does the Constitution establish a requirement for "partisan" elections? Second, where does it say candidates for political office must abide by the rules of some private organization before they may stand for election?

Constitutional or not, partisan elections have simply become a personal-rights-constraining reality. And don’t bother claiming any individual may run for office without party affiliation. That is a disingenuous argumentum ad absurdum — with an emphasis on "dum."

Bill Anderson

South Salt Lake

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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