By Rebecca Martin
Last week, I poked around in search of a list of all the candidates running for office this election cycle to share on KingstonCitizens.org. What I learned was how difficult (and that day impossible) it was to find – and with only 1 1/2 weeks away from an important election.
Once, the League of Women Voters provided an impressive run down of all of the candidates and their platforms. Also included were candidate questions and answers as well as a thorough text of each candidates past record to help citizens be better informed. Where was it?
Sure, I could have put together a list of each individual candidates websites. But a one sided point of view wasn’t going to help you in your decision making process. In some circles, voters are told to ‘vote across the line’. All that is is a party tactic that encourages voters to not be educated ones, further diminishing the process.
I came across the phone number of Dare Thompson (what a great name, yes?), the president of the League of Women Voters and decided to call her to see what I could find out. Luckily, she was home – and we had a wonderful discussion. Dare was surprised that the ballot that once existed on the Ulster County Board of Elections site was not working correctly. When we finished our conversation, she contacted them immediately and was able to work with them to straighten it out. No one had caught that error until that moment. What does that tell you?
It’s repaired now, and you can easily access the names of everyone running on the ballot. The process here does ask that the resident do some investigative work, and there is still time to do it. Research the names on the ballot. Not only the candidates you are not familiar with, but those that you think you know as well.
1. Visit – http://www.co.ulster.ny.us/elections/
2. Click on “Look up your polling site and view a sample ballot”
3. Put in your zip code, street number and street name.
4. You’ll be taken to a page where you’ll find all important voting details. Look for the ‘Sample Ballot’ box on the left hand side and “click here” to see a sample ballot. The list of candidates you will have to choose from are there. Print this out, and do some research while there is a little time left.
If you have any additional tips for readings in finding good information, please include it in the comment section of this post.
Be on the look out for an interview with Dare Thompson on KingstonCitizens.org shortly…
2 thoughts on “Cast an Educated Vote on November 2nd, 2010. Here’s How.”
http://www.vote411.org is a good site which also happens to be a LWV site with a lot of helpful info (though it is not helpful on local elections)
So true: it is near impossible to find this information in an easy to consumer manner, and with people still seeking that instant gratification solution, this lack of transparency and suspicious lack of non-biased information is disheartening; bordering on conspiratorial or deeply negligent! I mean our local “newspaper” carries no election information on the night prior to the election and has no links anywhere on the page. They only mention new voting machines. More disturbingly, the board of elections is “temporarily out of service” and we wonder why people don’t trust the government to provide competent services, sheesh! Is it any wonder why the country is poised to cast votes of anger, fear, and/or demagoguery? Ah democracy how far you have fallen in this “Information Age.”