In a recent piece I wrote about candidate quality control by reinvigorating the power of state chairs to muscle out primary candidates who would inevitably go down to defeat in the general.
But that’s half the battle. You can have the best and most appropriate candidate in the world, but if the electorate is so moronic as to be ignorant of their virtues, or of the defects of their opponent, they can still go down to defeat.
Case in point: the recent US Senate general election in PA. Now Oz was no dream candidate. In fact, he should have been taken out, per above suggestion, by the state chair in the primary and a more purple state friendly replacement found.
But he also wasn’t a complete schmendrick. An intelligent electorate would have elected him to the Senate over the mentally damaged Frankenstein who beat him.
That election was a no-brainer, as is Fetterman. The Dem could hardly string a sentence together, much less utter a coherent series of thoughts. This was apparent to even the most casual observer. Yet it is likely a majority of Pennsylvania voters chose him to sit in the Senate. I say likely because after over thirty years of running elections in that state I know the Democrats there are so corrupt that anything is possible.
But for the sake of argument let’s say the voters of Imbecylvania actually put Lurch in the Senate. Yes, PA voters, and in many other locales, are that thick. Is there anything we can do about it? Can we improve the quality of voters? Perhaps.
To get a driver’s license you need to take a test. To do other commonplace things there are qualifications and standards to meet. Should it be any less when playing a part in deciding the future of your community, state, and country?
I don’t mean the kind of biased voting tests used to exclude black voters in the South before the civil rights movement. But after all, there are tests for citizenship and isn’t voting a natural outgrowth of that process?
For how is a person without a basic knowledge of American history and government supposed to make an informed decision in the voting booth? Would we permit a blind person to drive?
I’m not talking about a long and complicated test. Maybe just a dozen multiple choice or true and false questions that would gage an individual’s basic proficiency with the subject at hand. They would need to correctly answer 8 out of 12 to pass. It would be taken only once and would center on rudimentary US history and the Constitution.
If we don’t institute some type of voter quality control then we will keep getting Fettermans in the Senate on a regular basis. That is not a recipe for long term national success.