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Here's a link to the results of yesterday's election:

http://www.dutchesselections.com/Election_Results/PE09/racelist.htm

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Comment by Mark Roland on September 18, 2009 at 7:39am
Early front runner for BCN Awards, in the highly competitive Most Likely to Volunteer Someone Other Than Themselves As a Volunteer category..."Charlene Vesuvius." She was just wondering, should she win, is there someone who could volunteer to pick up the award for her? She'll be away on important business.
Comment by Dan Rigney on September 18, 2009 at 7:25am
Nothing like seeing your name in lights first thing in the morning.
Comment by Kelly Kingman on September 17, 2009 at 9:18pm
What Mark said.
Comment by Mark Roland on September 17, 2009 at 9:14pm
Dearest _____________________________

I do apologize, but the fall season, with its galas, balls and fundraisers, doth approach quickly. Between that, my regular upscale white-as-hell parties, and my continued commitment to be the finest boulevardier I can possibly be, I'm dreadfully afraid I do not have the time/money to/for ___________________________. But I do thank you/all of you/Mr. President for thinking that my skills as a __________________ would be of service in this instance.

Deepest regrets,

Mark Roland, Esq.
Comment by brianpjcronin on September 17, 2009 at 1:15pm
I would think it would be the responsibility of The Dutchess County Board of Elections to create a voter guide, wouldn't it?
Comment by Scott Tillitt on September 17, 2009 at 12:33pm
Or it could be that some of the newcomers aren't registered with a party. I, for one, don't buy into party ideology and so am not attached to one. So I'm ineligible to vote in the primaries (here anyway).
Comment by Cabot Parsons on September 17, 2009 at 8:57am
Most of the new candidates got a sizeable article about their candidacy in the Beacon Free Press.

In Texas and other states every registered voter can vote in a primary, regardless of their party affiliation or lack thereof. Since our common tax dollars pay for these primaries, not the political party coffers, it makes sense to let all voters vote and also gives every voter a voice in each step of each election, rather than having to wait (and pay for) the two main parties to make up their mind and only after that getting a say in who we want for a particular office.
Comment by Philomena on September 17, 2009 at 8:23am
Makes me wonder a bit why it seems the citizens need to come up with suggestions for candidates to get their message across - shouldn't the candidates want/need to do this ? Seems some apathy on their part on that issue. I never even got a single flyer stuffed into my mailbox or onto my screen door from any candidate.
Comment by Mark Roland on September 17, 2009 at 8:17am
What candidates stand for and how many people come out to vote are separate issues. Somehow the people who voted figured it out. One problem with voter access was a very late poll opening.

My partner and I did not realize that primary voting, as opposed to the regular November general vote, does not begin until 12 noon. My partner leaves for the city at 9, and in her current job does not return until 10:30-11. It was already too late to request a write-in, so she had to excuse herself from work to get home early enough to vote.

A lot of the low turnout is classic citizen apathy, of course. You could run a hundred debates and still get a similar percentage of those who care enough to pull the lever. And actually, from what I heard, it was a comparatively big turnout for a primary in an off-year election (no President, Mayor, etc.)

As for using websites to air candidate positions on local issues, "Charlene's" own survey shows that only six percent of Beacon citizens use the interwebs:

When asked where they got their information about Beacon, 59 said from the Beacon Free Press, 35 said from friends and neighbors, 6 said from local online sites, and nobody said from the City of Beacon Website. [source]

It may make more sense to invite each candidate to write a platform statement for publication in the Beacon Free Press.
Comment by brianpjcronin on September 16, 2009 at 9:36pm
I agree, it's not great that the only chance we have to learn about the candidates is a single meeting; and if we couldn't go to that, then we were out of luck.

It would have been nice to have somewhere, either here or on the City of Beacon's website, a simple listing of who is running for what, PLUS room for a simple statement from each candidate. It's nice that there are so many signs all over town telling me what people's names are, but that doesn't tell me what anyone's views or plans for the City are.

It wouldn't have to be interactive. Perhaps it shouldn't. But a voter's guide isn't too much to ask for, I think.

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