ICYMI: The Rent Is 2 Damn High (video)

Forget the Year of the Conservative Woman; 2010 is shaping up to be the Year of the Obscure Candidate’s YouTube Hit. If you haven’t watched Jimmy McMillan’s New York gubernatorial debate performance yet, you really should.

Now, a couple of questions of local relevance: Given that it’s extremely hard for even well-established third parties to get full ballot access in Georgia, would we be better or worse off if, as in New York, there were as many as 10 candidates for governor on the ballot?

And, in a related manner, what if we didn’t have the 50-percent-plus-one vote requirement? Anyone who won a plurality of the vote would be declared the winner without a runoff — e.g., Karen Handel would be the GOP nominee for governor today.

41 comments Add your comment

A Hearty Cheese Sauce

October 20th, 2010
11:09 am

As I recall thats how Hitler began his rise…

CJ

October 20th, 2010
11:27 am

Yes to third-party ballot access plus runoffs, preferably instant runoffs, requiring 50-plus-one.

http://www.instantrunoff.com/

http://www.chrisgates.net/irv/

Road Scholar

October 20th, 2010
12:02 pm

I think the 50% plus one vote should remain the law in Georgia. Unfortunately, many times, people run who have no chance of winning, just to force a second runoff election. This costs the state and the candidates too much money.

As for the number of parties, Jesse Ventura said something interesting (I know, he is off the wall sometimes, but this is interesting observation)that he used to support beginning a third or other parties. He observed that for them to be successful, they must play the same game as the established parties, which he observed is not good. He then stated that there should not be any parties, that people should run on their own platform and abilities, thus having their positions defined before they run w/o playing politics to any select group.

Intown

October 20th, 2010
12:21 pm

I like the 50% + 1 rule even though it makes it harder for a left-of-center party to win in Georgia in a general election with 3 candidates or more. It means whoever governs, governs with a mandate from the majority of the people. (yes, it’s a majority of people made up mainly by stupid people but, there’s nothing you can do about that except improve education or do something anti-democratic).

I also think there needs to be something to keep fringe parties from gaining a foothold. I think in places like Germany, you have to win at least 5% of the vote to have a seat in parliament. In U.S. presidential elections, you have to win some percentage to qualify for federal campaign funds in the next election.

These barriers to fringe parties should be set low enough to encourage political diversity but high enough to keep out the loonies and future Hitlers of the world.

Jefferson Jackson

October 20th, 2010
12:37 pm

I think party politics has run its course in the U.S. You want to run for governor? Pay the filing fee, get on the ballot. If no one gets 50% + 1, then you hold a run-off with the top two. Nationally, there is entirely too much pressure on politicians to toe the party line, which is why conservative politicians who get sent to Washington suddenly turn into tax & spend liberals and liberal politicians who get sent turn into Milquetoasts. Stand or fall on your OWN record, not that of some undefinable “party.” The system is badly broken and we poor schmuck citizens pay the price..

Ragnar Danneskjöld

October 20th, 2010
12:43 pm

I like the 50% + 1 rule, even though I was a Handel supporter. Such a rule in all elections would have prevented John McCain from getting the Republican nomination in 2008. Consistent with that view, I would also approve of allowing 250 candidates for any race on any ballot.

I fear our Libertarian friends, with whom I feel much affinity, have missed their opportunity. Their views are not so different from the tea partiers, but the tea partiers determined to use the strength of their beliefs to take over the republican party. They haven’t, not completely, but the tea partiers have stolen whatever message our Libertarian friends have tried to communicate. Libertarians could have taken over either party, but chose to remain outside the mainstream. More concerned with sending a statement than actually making things better, I suppose.

scrappy

October 20th, 2010
12:45 pm

I don’t really see how it matters. In any state wide election here the person with the R next to their name will be elected. No rational thought is ever used nor required for this state’s electorate.

Perhaps we should open up the elections to have 10 candidates, but they all have to be from the same Republican party. Maybe then people would have to actually think about who they vote for.

carlosgvv

October 20th, 2010
12:53 pm

You have identifed a problem that will be difficult to solve. It is becomming more and more clear that neither of the major parties are giving the majority what they want and need. However, with five or more parties vying for votes, a whole new set of problems arises, as you have noted.

Peter

October 20th, 2010
1:10 pm

The way Deal Lied to Georgia, and to Georgian’s…… I think Karen Handel..should be a candidate…..she would easily beat Deal today after what we now know.

commoncents

October 20th, 2010
1:30 pm

scrappy-

people wouldn’t think… they’d vote on whoever’s name they remember most, which would certainly be someone with too much special interest funds

Drew S

October 20th, 2010
1:40 pm

What about instant runoffs? I know there are some places that allow you to have a second choice on the ballot. If you vote for a candidate that gets less than X% of the vote, you move to your second choice. (Or something like that . . . I’m not entirely clear on how the process works). In essence it would allow you to vote with your heart for a third party, but your head would be in the clear as you could have a “mainstream” vote on your ticket.

Tyler Durden

October 20th, 2010
1:41 pm

Wow. If the GOP is regretting the loss of Karen Handel, must mean they realize how vulnerable Nathan ‘Let’s Make a’ Deal really is. I believe it was someone during the Vietnam War era who famously proclaimed: we get the government we deserve. To paraphrase that sentiment: the GOP gets the candidate they deserve…

Yer almost making it easy for Roy, and while he’s far from anyone’s first choice, he’ll be a helluva lot better than Deal. I’m not sure Georgia could stand four more years of GOP ‘leadership’…

Question Authority

October 20th, 2010
2:00 pm

It would be far preferable to have None of the Above on the ballot for every race. If NOTA wins, none of the candidates can run again for the new election. As many 3rd parties as are representative of the electorate should be allowed on the ballot. Lord knows the two-faced single party we have now certainly doesn’t represent most of america. Just look at the voter turnout. If folks knew their vote, even for NOTA was going to mean something, maybe they would participate. Of course in truth, nobody should vote because it only reinforces the belief that 50% +1 of the population can victimise the rest and it only encourages the elites.

DawgDad

October 20th, 2010
2:04 pm

You people scare the pants off me. Political parties are a manifestation of free speech, and should be respected as such. Ballot access laws are practical constraints on free speech; there is a delicate balance here between maintaining free speech/access and orderly process, and not allowing major parties to supress free speech or rig the process. Freer ballot access coupled with no 50+1 majority rule could have truly dire consequences with fringe candidates potentially winning splintered races and governing without representing or answering to any significant constituency.

Haywood Jablome

October 20th, 2010
2:07 pm

Wasn’t that guy in The Wiz?

DawgDad

October 20th, 2010
2:12 pm

“Lord knows the two-faced single party we have now certainly doesn’t represent most of america. Just look at the voter turnout. If folks knew their vote, even for NOTA was going to mean something, maybe they would participate.”

Participation is open. People elect of their own free will not to participate. Shame on them for not taking primaries and the leadup seriously, not to mention the general elections.

DawgDad

October 20th, 2010
2:19 pm

“she would easily beat Deal today after what we now know” Pure speculation. I believe most Republican primary voters were well aware of the baggage on both candidates. I think Handel’s political limitations would produce approximately the same result today; i.e., the vote split was largely along regional lines. She did not appeal to outstate voters in comparison to Deal. Fair vote, fair result. Losers concede and move on.

DawgDad

October 20th, 2010
2:19 pm

“she would easily beat Deal today after what we now know” Pure speculation. I believe most Republican primary voters were well aware of the baggage on both candidates. I think Handel’s political limitations would produce approximately the same result today; i.e., the vote split was largely along regional lines. She did not appeal to outstate voters in comparison to Deal. Fair vote, fair result. Losers concede and move on.

Bob

October 20th, 2010
2:45 pm

This guy is just repeating what got Obama voted into office, he is giving away free rent and food, it’s all free.

Jefferson

October 20th, 2010
2:46 pm

Why don’t they have a (T) beside their name.

JF McNamara

October 20th, 2010
2:55 pm

I agree, “The Rent is too D— High!” Sadly, this guy is a great politician… he offered no solution to high rent. He just kept repeating his party name. He actually had the audience to suggest change, but didn’t.

TARP Worked!

October 20th, 2010
2:57 pm

Bloomberg: “The U.S. government’s bailout of financial firms through the Troubled Asset Relief Program provided taxpayers with higher returns than yields paid on 30- year Treasury bonds — enough money to fund the Securities and Exchange Commission for the next two decades.

The government has earned $25.2 billion on its investment of $309 billion in banks and insurance companies, an 8.2 percent return over two years, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That beat U.S. Treasuries, high-yield savings accounts, money- market funds and certificates of deposit. Investing in the stock market or gold would have paid off better.

When the government first announced its intention to plow funds into the nation’s banks in October 2008 to resuscitate the financial system, many expected it to lose hundreds of billions of dollars…”

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-10-20/bailout-of-wall-street-returns-8-2-profit-to-taxpayers-beating-treasuries.html

Kyle Wingfield

October 20th, 2010
3:03 pm

In his defense, JF — and take this with a whole shaker of salt — the candidates were given just 30 seconds to answer the questions. Can’t offer much of a solution in 30 seconds.

That said, I haven’t checked out his website to see if he goes into any more detail there.

j

October 20th, 2010
3:21 pm

Georgia is truly a backward state and their voting laws reflect this. The yankees are light years ahead of you bozos.

j

October 20th, 2010
3:24 pm

JF McNamara

October 20th, 2010
2:55 pm
I agree, “The Rent is too D— High!” Sadly, this guy is a great politician… he offered no solution to high rent. He just kept repeating his party name. He actually had the audience to suggest change, but didn’t.

Link Report this comment
—-
do you need someone to tell you the solution to high rent? let me guess you got your edumacation from the great state of jawjah. :)

joe

October 20th, 2010
3:50 pm

Based upon what we know about Deal and Barnes, DO NOT vote for either one of them. One is a crook and the other a do-nothing has been. Vote for the Libertarian candidate. If there was ever an election where a 3rd candidate deserves to win over two idiots, THIS IS IT.

Hillbilly Deluxe

October 20th, 2010
4:08 pm

And, in a related manner, what if we didn’t have the 50-percent-plus-one vote requirement?

The system was put in place many years ago when Georgia was a one-party state. Winning the Democratic primary was basically winning the general election. The run off system was put in place so the winner would be the choice of a majority of the voters. Agree with it or disagree with it, that’s the reason we have it.

Dave

October 20th, 2010
4:18 pm

The reason the “Rent is Too Damn High” is that well-intentioned fools from the left put rent-control laws and green-space regulations into place, which artificially drove up the cost of rent for everyone else. Get government out of the way and the price of housing in NY, San Francisco and such would go down.

"Information becomes a distraction, a diversion, a form of entertainment" - BHO, May 1, 2010

October 20th, 2010
4:19 pm

The Rent Is Too Damn High Guy DOESN’T PAY ANY RENT.

"Information becomes a distraction, a diversion, a form of entertainment" - BHO, May 1, 2010

October 20th, 2010
4:22 pm

Funny how the madam who got hookers for Elliot Spitzer, the disgraced former governor and now CNN show host, doesn’t get a mention.

The debate was a disgrace a clown show.

This is exactly what the MSM wants to show America. They’ll do anything to divert people’s attention from the landslide that’s coming in 13 days.

DawgGrandpa

October 20th, 2010
4:28 pm

How many Presidents have had 50% + 1 of popular votes in last 25 years (Clinton was as low as 42-43% in 1992, I believe). Should he not have been President? (I know that the electoral college elects Presidents, but we have no such state equivalent). Do you people out there believe if someone holds the ‘first round election” as 49-40-11, that the 49 should not win? (You can make up similar numbers almost endlessly)…a more ridiculous example…49-27-24?
I went to school up north, you can double check me, but I think my numbers add up to 100.

Kyle Wingfield

October 20th, 2010
4:47 pm

DawgGrandpa: That’s the way Georgia election law works today. That’s why Karen Handel had to go to a runoff despite winning 34 percent of the vote in a seven-person field and why Mary Norwood went to a runoff in Atlanta’s mayoral election last year despite winning 46 percent in a six-person field. Both women led the second-place finisher by double digits…and both nevertheless went on to lose their respective runoffs.

Hillbilly Deluxe

October 20th, 2010
4:58 pm

Kyle, DawgGrandpa

As I said earlier, the law was put in when Georgia was a one party state. One reason it was put in was to stop one candidate from getting dummy candidates to run, to draw votes away from their opponent, so they could win with less than a majority.

Casting My Vote

October 20th, 2010
4:59 pm

The sad reality is that if Mr “Rent” lived in Atlanta, he’d easily beat “Recycled Roy” and “Bad Business” Deal, and that says a lot about our two candidates!

SwedeAtlanta

October 20th, 2010
6:36 pm

I think that each party that will be fielding a candidate for any constitutional office in Georgia should define their own primary rules. In the general election I am torn between letting the victor be he/she that garners the most votes even if that is 20% of those casting votes or if we should force runoffs to ensure that the successful candidate gains a majority of votes.

That said, even though I tend to vote Democratic, I cross-over voted in the Republican runoff and voted for Karen Handel. I could probably have even supported her in the general election over Roy Barnes. I feel Nathan Deal has too many ethical and financial challenges to be an effective governor and sense something in his eyes that tells me there is something foul going on here.

I fear that Georgia voters will simply pull the lever for the “R” candidate because somehow they think he will deliver them prayer in school, zero taxes and a restoration of the Confederate flag. Voters need to engage in some critical thinking. They need to assess how the state is doing after 8 years of Republic majorities in both chambers of the General Assembly and the Governor’s mansion. Sonny Perdue might be a jovial enough person but in my view he has been totally ineffective as a governor. Even adjusting for the current economic downturn, I feel Georgia is worse off than they were in 2000.

I wish the governor and General Assembly would focus on things that really matter to ordinary Georgians – jobs, economic future, education, traffic, environment – i.e. clean air, water and greenspace and healthcare. Unfortunately I suspect they will focus on things like microchips in humans, seceding from the Union and other such nonsense.

Grumpy

October 20th, 2010
6:49 pm

Let all the candidates in a debate. Heck, I bet that guy at least knows separation of church and state is covered in the first amendment. Christine O’Donnell, I’m looking at you!

SwedeAtlanta

October 20th, 2010
7:05 pm

Grumpy, it would be difficult to require all candidates to engage in a debate. While I think these have some value in helping select a qualified person, they aren’t perfect. ‘

I would have preferred to see Deal, Handel and at least Barnes debate.

Trust me Georgians will (not publicly of course) regret Deal but it appears this slimy, underhanded, thug-like politician that is Satan’s spawn will be your next governor. I will never, ever acknowledge him but that is the likely outcome because Georgia voters are generally undereducated, indoctrinated or STUPID.

midtownguy

October 20th, 2010
7:15 pm

It reminds me of the 60’s mantra “Speak Truth to Power”

skydog

October 20th, 2010
8:05 pm

Swede,

Undereducated, indoctrinated and stupid are just small excuses for these folks voting for a known crook.
It`s 95% a flag thing and these guys wern`t history majors or into heritage at all.

A Fox sheep is loud. A Fox redneck is dangerous.

Say What

October 20th, 2010
8:13 pm

Suade -
Given that Sonny Purdue was the first republican governor since reconstruction, your statement “Georgia voters are generally undereducated, indoctrinated or STUPID” would be describing democrats…. is that your intention or are you just “undereducated, indoctrinated or STUPID”??

David Granger

October 21st, 2010
12:10 am

I say we draft this guy to run for President in 2012, and get that “Pants on the Ground” guy to run as his VP candidate. We could do (and HAVE done) a lot worse…