Letters to the Editor

Joel Thigpen: Prime position on ballot

I noticed that the Wake County election ballot I completed listed all Republican candidates first in order of the candidates running for a particular office. This was true in all races and even in those judgeship races where party affiliation was not provided. Why? Candidates were not listed in alphabetical order or by incumbency or even randomly. In every instance, the Republican candidate was listed first.

From my political science classes and work in a number of political campaigns, I learned and came to understand that the position of the candidates’ names on the ballot was an influencing factor in the voters selection when little was known about either the candidates. And, unfortunately for our political system and society that happens far too often.

So, was this an attempt to manipulate the election results or just ignorance or let’s just make it easy for the person who had to layout the ballot? I hope I am missing something because none of these choices are good ones.

Joel Thigpen


Editor’s note: Under a change in state law made in 2013, nominees of the current governor’s party must appear first on the ballot.