March 25, 2008 -- FairElect formally announces the effort for the November Election of 2009 during the Call to the Audience portion of the regular session meeting of the Mayor and Council. The text of the remarks are below and the audio files of the remarks and the December 16, 2006 vote to form a "Citizen's Task Force" are below the text.
In December of 2006 the Tucson City Council voted unanimously to form a "Citizen's Task Force" to better our election system. Then nothing happened.
Our election system is flawed at the base and in need of rejuvenation. Too few vote in our elections and too many feel that their vote does not matter.
This is not an indictment of the Mayor, the Council, the Government or of those who framed our election system many years ago. It is simply a call to do better by our citizenry.
FairElect-Tucson has registered five initiative applications for the election of 2009.
Because the majority should never select representation for the minority, our at-large system of elections must end.
Because the voice and values of the electorate are of utmost importance in a democracy, our non-majority, winner-take-all system must end.
Since the task of governing this city increases with its size, the number of city wards should be linked to the population of the city.
Single District Voting for the time being
Ranked Choice or Instant Runoff Voting for elections with 3 or more candidates
A new method of selecting the Mayor to remove the predictable turnout swing between Midtown and Mayoral elections.
Ward sizing limits so that we can grow the council with the city.
--And-- Since a primary election is unnecessary with an instant Runoff System, our September Primary should be eliminated with all candidates and their affiliations on the ballot in November.
Ideas regarding a Proportional Representation System and a call for regional elections for Pima County are on the drawing board.
To the Mayor and Council -- There are many people in Tucson who care deeply about building a better election system. I ask that you listen and participate in this important conversation.
The "Call to the Audience portion of these public meeting gives citizens a 3-minute chance to address the Mayor and Council. Often any commentary in is mixed into a, well, interesting group of concerned citizens. To listen to a full accounting of this or any other session of the meetings of the Mayor and Council follow the link to the City of Tucson's "Channel 12" site page for audio archives (Click Here). Or look below for amore specific tour of the day.
Here Jim Sinex addresses the Mayor And Council during the regular session in a March 25, 2008 "Call to the Audience". The intent was to formally introduce the FairElect effort and the reasoning behind it. So, if you can stand the reading of the text above, click here or on the microphone graphic to the left.
Here is the introduction of a proposal for a Citizen's Task force for Elections made during a tense meeting where Council Members responded to audience members concerns over past support for an All-Mail Ballot System for Tucson Elections. So, click here or on the microphone graphic to the left for the audio file.
Note: FairElect.org pages regarding concerns about All-Mail Systems and the statewide rejection of the idea.
Also Note: The business of running elections is a complex and tricky business. For a deeper understanding of the Mayor and Council's response to the All-Mail proposal, follow the link to the City of Tucson's "Channel 12" site page for audio archives (Click Here). Sessions on December 12 and 19, 2006 have sections that deal with the issue. Realize that the council was responding to a large volume of commentary in their offices and in the Council Chambers.