Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Closing the Polls

Pierce County Auditor Pat McCarthy in considering input from her staff and the Blue Ribbon Review Panel on Ranked Choice Voting has decided to propose eliminating poll voting starting February 2008.

Katie Blinn of the Secretary of State's office and member of the Blue Ribbon Review Panel has noted that almost all of the other counties in the state have already moved to all mail voting and over 70% of Pierce County voters already vote by mail.

Pierce County has already consolidated its polling sites so that many precincts use the same polling site. In addition, for some of the low turnout elections such as school levies, poll workers get lonely due to limited participation at the polls.

While ranked choice voting may be the tipping point for this decision, by 2009 Pierce County would have been the only county in the state with poll voting. Most voters seem to like voting by mail and the Auditor was being pushed this direction by multiple forces.

The editorial board of the News Tribune comes down on McCarthy's side on this issue and rightly so.


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