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Special election system unfair to third party

Date published: 8/14/2014

Those who play partisan political games are continuing their shenanigans in Virginia's 7th Congressional District.

The aftermath of Eric Cantor's loss in the Republican primary last June is making the 7th into a political joke.

Eric Cantor has quit his office, effective Aug. 18. In two weeks we will have no congressional representation.

Rather than act immediately, our State Board of Elections, under direction from Gov. McAuliffe, has chosen to delay the special election until the same day as the general election, making us vote for the same elected position twice on the same day.

The only difference in the two elections is that the winner of the special election will be sworn in on the morning of Nov. 5 to serve just six weeks in place of the failed Cantor.

Why if it can be vacant until Nov. 5 can it not be vacant until Jan. 3? Because the special election automatically includes only Republican and Democratic candidates.

Volunteers for Libertarian James Carr, and James Carr himself, spent months earlier this year collecting a thousand signatures in the 7th so that he could be one of the choices for voters this November.

If Carr wants to be on the ballot for the special election, he has one week to collect a thousand signatures again. This is a blatant example of how the two-party system effectively creates false choices for voters, leading us to believe we have only two choices in any given election.

I urge you to consider that bipartisan elections are a rigged system. This week, when you see a volunteer collecting those thousand signatures for Carr to be on the ballot for the special election, please sign. And please vote for James Carr in November.

J. Todd Martinsen