Scott Tibbs
blog post
November 10th, 2004

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Should we eliminate the option to vote "straight ticket"?

On the ballot in Indiana and some other states, voters have the option of selecting a "straight ticket" option that votes for every candidate of a political party that has automatic ballot access. (In Indiana, that would be Republicans, Democrats and Libertarians.)

I believe Indiana should eliminate this option. Simply being able to hit one button for multiple candidates is too easy and encourages people to vote without examining the issues involved in all local races.

Furthermore, pushing the "straight ticket" button and leaving the rest of the ballot alone leaves important races out and can cause one to miss other good candidates. For example, the MCCSC School Board races are non-partisan, and someone voting straight-ticket for the Republicans would have missed the chance to vote for a Libertarian candidate in State Representative District 61 where there was no Republican candidate.

Voters should be required to cast a ballot on each race individually. If someone wants to vote for every Democrat or every Republican, they certainly have the right to do so. But pushing one button for every race on your ballot does not make for responsible and informed voting.