Bill Scher: Make sure you vote for two candidates each in at-large races
To the editor:
No matter who you plan to support for the two at-large City Council and two at-large School Committee seats in Northampton, you should make sure to fully exercise your democratic rights and cast two votes for two people in each of those races.
High rates of “blanks” were tabulated in both the 2009 and 2011 at-large races, which suggests many Northampton voters were not aware they had two votes to cast, or didn’t see a reason to vote for someone who wasn’t their first choice.
Either way, failure to exercise your full voting rights distorts the outcome, because the final tally doesn’t truly reflect the complete will of the people.
In a worst-case scenario, someone who would otherwise be the city’s third choice can place second and win a seat if not enough people bother to mark their actual second choice on their ballots.
I plan to vote for Bill Dwight and Jesse Adams for city councilor-at-large, and Sam Welson and Kari Nykorchuk for at-large School Committee members. But while I’m always happy to see others vote the way I do, it’s more important that you exercise your right to vote ... all your votes.