How to democratize government

By Richard Laybourn
Published September 2nd 2006 in Minneapolis Star Tribune

Regarding Lori Sturdevant's Aug. 28 column on partisan politics and reports on two new books: Our political system certainly needs fixing, but not the way U.S. Rep. Jim Ramstad suggests (electing more moderates).

On the contrary, we need to genuinely democratize government and increase voter participation by allowing differing viewpoints to be represented through instant runoff voting and proportional representation. As it is now, we basically have a fruit cocktail of mushy, indiscernible fruits. Fair distribution of public financing of campaigns would also help.

On a longer term, we need to abolish party politics and have candidates run on issues, flexibly coalescing in Congress around issues as the case may be.