The Swarm

Mix it up with The Bee's editorial board.

November 21, 2008
Radio commentary: Cut state holidays

Much sacrifice will be required to close the state's $11 billion plus budget gap. Here's one easy  fix the governor has recommended: Cut the excessive number of state holidays. Click on my radio commentary here to hear about all the holidays state workers enjoy and what it all costs.

November 6, 2008
Too much democracy!!!
Tired of crawling through a ballot that's too long? Me too. I have an idea for making the next few elections go faster and smoother - a moratorium on initiatives. You can hear my  Capitol Public Radio rant on democracy gone amok here.
November 4, 2008
Most vote by mail voters are white

A number of voter rights groups who represent minority and poor voters have been skeptical about vote-by-mail balloting. A look at the Field Poll projections on the demographics of vote--by-mail-voters shows why their skepticism is justified.

According to the Field Poll, 70 per cent of all early voter/mail-in ballots were cast by white, non-Hispanic voters. Only 6 percent of mail-in voters were black;  9 percent were Asian and  15 percent Latino. The Field Poll shows that minority voters overwhelmingly vote at their precincts on election day.

Low income voters are also less likely to vote by mail. Only 12 percent of early mail-in-voters had household incomes of $20,000 a year or less. By comparison, the highest percentage of early/mail-in voters, 34 percent, had household incomes of $100,000 or more.

Many have suggested that California should go the way of Oregon and allow for mail voting exclusively. The low mail-in voter participation by minorities and the poor shows why that's not a good idea. So, see you at the polls.

About The Swarm

The Swarm is written by members of The Sacramento Bee's editorial board. They meet daily and are separate from the newsroom. Views included here are those of individual writers, and do not necessarily reflect those of a majority of the board or the positions expressed in The Bee's editorials.

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