Letters to the Editor

Letter: Referendums or representative democracy

To the Editor:

Does anyone besides me have a problem with turning over our representative democracy form of government to government by referendum? A recent Northwest Herald editorial view from the Moline Dispatch and Rock Island Argus took the position that local voters would have more control over self-government through public referendums than through decisions of elected officials, i.e. politicians.

The editorial stated “We, however, believe that in a democracy, those choices (namely, deciding to eliminate McHenry and/or Nunda township governments) belong to the voters, not the people they elect to serve at their pleasure.”

I disagree. Current referendum laws put no burden of involvement on the voting public.
Referendums that do not require a certain percentage of eligible voters to participate, say 45% or so, are less democratic than decisions made by elected officials, who at least need a quorum and majority vote to act.

Please, someone explain to me how a mere 9% of voters who actually turn up to vote should be making such decisions? At least, with officeholders, they can be voted out of office. The dopes who do not do their duty and vote in elections can’t even be voted off the island.

Nancy Fike

McHenry

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