[MissoulaGov] LGSC

Jim McGrath jmcgrath at missoulahousing.org
Mon Oct 30 08:12:40 MST 2006

Most New Party folks, along with Republicans and Democrats, opposed
non-partisan elections. It slows party-building if you eliminate
parties. :-)

-----Original Message-----
From: missoulagov-bounces at cmslists.com
[mailto:missoulagov-bounces at cmslists.com] On Behalf Of Pete Talbot
Sent: Monday, October 30, 2006 12:03 AM
To: bobj at montana.com
Cc: missoulagov at cmslists.com
Subject: Re: [MissoulaGov] LGSC

Nonpartisan elections are a failed experiment. It sounded good at the
time. I voted for 'em. I was wrong.

In a perfect world, there would be no political parties. Everyone would

be an informed citizen, would be up on all the issues and candidates,
and would vote accordingly. But you've probably noticed, it ain't a
perfect world.

One of the things I miss about not having partisan elections are the
primaries. They really gave each party an opportunity to define itself
and then, hopefully, rally around the party's designated candidate in
the general. Political parties also help inform the electorate through
endorsements, literature drops, phone calls, etc. Political parties are

a great tool for recruiting potential candidates (and maybe weeding out
some of the not-so-great candidates). And, political parties make it
tougher on the 'posers;' those that claim Republican or Democrat
affiliation just to get elected in a ward that tends to lean Republican
or Democrat.

Finally, I don't remember the New Party taking a stand on
partisan/nonpartisan elections. I believe that New Party membership was

split on the subject and opinions ranged all over the map.
Pete Talbot

Bob Jaffe wrote:

> Here is a letter to the editor I sent out yesterday.



> Return to Partisan Elections:

> Our local political parties serve a vital role in creating excitement


> participation in our local elections. By eliminating partisan

elections we

> have effectively emasculated those organizations and weakened their


> in the democratic process. The effect has been a decline in


> Some say that fixing potholes and sidewalks have nothing to do with

> political affiliation. City Council decisions also cover land use,

> taxation, distribution of public resources, and many other issues


> an individual's perspective on the role of government and social

> priorities are significant. This is the very stuff that political


> help define. Please vote for the return to partisan elections.


> Nine Wards:

> The decision over nine wards ultimately comes down to how you feel


> Ward 2. Missoula's growth has primarily been on the northwest side of

> town. These new neighborhoods have been annexed into Ward 2. Grant


> and the neighborhoods to the west have distinctly different needs and

> interests than the older Northside and Westside neighborhoods. With


> wards those areas will be able to vote for their own representative.


> six wards we will most likely split the Northside and Westside,


> one to the Rattlesnake and one to the Grant Creek and Mullan road


> One of these central historic neighborhoods will forever be relegated


> being a numerical minority to the often competing interests of the new

> neighborhoods to the west. This same principal applies to the rest of


> city as well. As populations shift and we redraw ward boundaries, nine

> wards will give us more opportunity to keep the wards representing

> neighborhoods of somewhat similar needs. If you believe wards should

> represent neighborhoods and areas of common interest please vote for


> wards.


> Bob Jaffe

> Missoula City Council Representative Ward 3


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