In just over a month, local voters will cast ballots in the February 5th Presidential Primary. It’s not just a vote but the way we vote this time around that makes news.

First, the Secretary of State decertified voting computers out of concern that public votes could be jeopardized by computer hackers. So, we will go back to paper ballots. Lots of encouragement to go with absentee ballots. Check with the Elections’ Departments of Inyo and Mono.

Also in the February election, those who are registered in the ambiguous but free-wheeling category of “Declined to State” a political party, that is, can vote for either Democratic or American Independent candidates. According to Inyo County Clerk Mary Roper, Republicans declined to allow others to vote for their candidates. Why? Local officials aren’t sure.

Normally, in primaries, the “Declined to State” folks can only vote on non-partisan issues.

Okay, crossovers aside, how about plain old vanilla voting? As we had earlier noted, the June 3, 2008 election will see three Inyo and three Mono Supervisors up for election, plus two Mammoth Town Councilmen.

News at year’s end – Bill Wenzel of Lone Pine stopped at the Elections’ Department in Independence to pick up Petitions in Lieu of filing fees to run for supervisor in District 5. Actual filing of candidacy papers opens February 11th through March 7th.

Maybe it’s your year to make a difference.

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