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December, 1980

January, 1981

General Meeting on Women's Issues
President's Message (Barbara Farwell)
Confusing Ballots!
Money for ERA
Students' Voice on Viewpoint
Notes on Leaguers
Water?
Dollars and Service
Mayor-Elect "Brown Bags" it with LWV!
League in Action
Look at Children in the U.S. (Bernice Weissbound)
Sunshine Coalition (Romayne Karl)
Juveniles and the Justice System
Wanted Alive & Active
Membership
Calendar

Confusing Ballots!

The League felt people would be confused by the City Charter amendments -- and apparently they were!

On the first question, blank and spoiled ballots (nearly an even number of each) amounted to 20% of the ballots cast! That is, one out of every five voters either left the question blank or spoiled the ballot (and there were 3 ways to do that). On the 2nd question, there were more blank ballots than "yes" votes.

Obviously, despite a last minute flurry of educational and lobbying activity, many voters did not know what these issues were about.

The School Board election ballot was also a problem to many. Voters did not seem to understand that they could vote for one candidate from each of four separate districts as well as six at-large candidates. The result is that in all districts there were more "blank" votes than votes cast for the winning candidates.

We didn't get the data on OHA ballots, but that too was confusing. Because of the tremendous number of candidates running at-large, the list was divided alphabetically on both sides of two ballot cards. The instructions to vote for no more than 4 were repeated at the top of each side. As a result, many voters thought they could vote for 4 from each side - a possible 16.

I think we have valid concerns about voter education and ballot design!

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