Removing Political Party from Ballots Gains Steam in Olympia
At first glance this would possibly appear to be a Democrat-led idea, because many of the interesting or even controvesial voting-ballot ideas have come from that party in WA state.
GOP legislators would like to see the R or D removed from ballots
According to MyNorthwest.com, a House Bill that would remove party affiliation from voters ballots has peaked interest and could be gaining support in Olympia.
16th District House Rep Skyler Rude, who represents Walla Walla and now parts of Benton County, has introduced HB (house bill) 1826, which would do just that.
According to MyNorthwest.com:
"House Bill 1826 would eliminate party labels from Washington’s ballots, with the Legislature weighing whether or not they want candidates to remain identified by a political party.
The bill would ultimately force Washingtonians to vote, according to KTTH’s Jason Rantz, not based on a political party, but on the position the individual holds."
While it initially seems perhaps a strange proposal, Rude says this practice is already in place for many city council, school board, SPI and other elected positions in our state. He points out that data poltical studies shows decades ago political polarization or party loyalty was around 60 percent, but now many people vote up to 90 percent along party lines.
Supporters of this plan say it could potentially benefit GOP candidates on the west side, especially if they are able to present solid, understandable platform positions--including the voter's pamphlet.
Rude and supporters believe this plan would require people to learn about the candidates and select based upon their platforms and ideas rather than just R, D or independent.
There is a point there. Many of us have likely chosen a candidate we don't know much about based upon their party affiliation. It appears it did not make it out of committee, but could still be brought back later before the legislature convenes.