Monday, October 29, 2007

152. A Word from our Election Commission

Greg Sablan sent me this with a request to post on the blog. So here goes.
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The Commonwealth Election Commission has received reports that there are individuals informing our citizens and registered voters that a “yes” vote means “no” for some of the questions on the November 3, 2007 general election ballot.



There are seven (7) questions for Rota and for Saipan and the Islands North of Saipan, and six (6) for Tinian and Aguiguan, that require a yes or no vote. The questions are all found on the right-hand side of the ballot and they are for the four (4) judicial retention questions and the two (2) House Legislative Initiatives and the Saipan Casino Act for Saipan and the Islands North of Saipan and the Rota Casino Act of 2007 for Rota.



For the record, a “yes” vote means that a voter is approving the question, whether it is for the initiative or for the retention of the judicial officers. A “no” vote is a vote in opposition, a disapproval, of the question.



Thus, if a voter votes “yes” on the Saipan Casino Act, for example, that voter is voting to approve the initiative. A “no” vote means the voter is not in support of the initiative.



The same goes for all the questions on the right-hand side of the general election ballot.



Anyone having more information about this issue is asked to please report the matter to the Office of the Attorney General, the Public Auditor or to the Commonwealth Election Commission.



Sincerely yours,



GREGORIO C. SABLAN

Executive Director

COMMONWEALTH ELECTION COMMISSION

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Whoever is spreading the nonsense (about a yes vote meaning no) must not think our CNMI voters are very smart. Or else they're just desperate. I trust that most (all?) blog readers already know this, but just in case, or in case you find someone else asking about this, you can say you've read the official answer--yes means yes and no means no--and give a straight answer (without thinking it's a joke).

4 comments:

lil_hammerhead said...

Aren't the initiative ballots printed in Chamorro and Carolinian as well? It would seem that this would address any chance at decieving a voter who is not primarily an English speaker (or reader).

Saipan Writer said...

Well, that might take care of it if people read carefully while they're in the voting booth.

But I think Greg is worried that people go into the booth thinking they already know how they will vote, and if they've been mislead in the weeks coming up to the election, they could be confused. He's all for voter education ahead of time. And I guess I think that's a good idea too.

Saipan Writer said...

I forgot to mention that what really impressed me in today's newspaper was an advertisement with lots (more than 2 dozen, I think) of signature from different church leaders.

In my experience, it's been very rare that the church leaders in Saipan even talk to each other, much less work together. Having that many different faith denominations sign on to an anti-casino letter was pretty impressive.

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