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Friday, November 18, 2011

Poughkeepsie Journal Letter: Races Should Have More than One Hopeful

Today, I had a letter to the editor published in the Poughkeepsie Journal. You can view it online here or read below:

In the Town of Poughkeepsie Ward 5 last Tuesday, seven of the 13 races on the ballot featured a single candidate running unopposed. This goes against the nature of a true democracy, and there is no excuse for it. Voting for candidates is supposed to be a free and open choice. However, with just one candidate, it becomes what is called a “Hobson’s choice.” This term refers to the illusion of a “free” choice where there is really only one option. In other words, “take it or leave it.” Yet still, candidates run unopposed and get re-elected continuously. Nothing ever changes, because voters aren’t willing to create change. While unopposed candidates do create a Hobson’s choice, you always have the option to “leave it.” I regret that more voters did not choose this option by either writing in a candidate or not voting at all for those offices. If they had, perhaps we could have made a dent in the system.

Gregory Koch

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