Let’s talk voter registration. I’m stepping outside my comfort zone and throwing myself to the lions but I feel that, in light of recent events and mostly because it is the right thing to do, the time has come for the Virginia General Assembly to approve voter registration by party.
No, this isn’t just in the heat of the moment after witnessing a very divisive State Central Committee meeting where GOP friends were pitted against each other and a few even brought to tears over the pressure they were receiving from both sides. The fact is, I’ve argued myself blue in the face talking in favor of it off and on during the 19 years that I served on that most auspicious body. Most of America has registration by party and there is a clear option for those who wish not to align themselves. It’s called Independent, and that person can choose which primary he/she wishes to vote in. They can even change their minds in each election; it’s entirely up to them.
I see absolutely no good reason why we can’t make this happen and I think that both the Republican and Democratic state organizations should get behind it. Quite frankly, both would benefit from better lists of people who willingly identify with their party of choice, plus they’ll know exactly who the independents (read “swing voters”) are which can’t help but be a fair bonus to both sides.
I’m sure that there is some deep dark reason why in all these years the Virginia General Assembly has declined to allow these bills, which keep popping up, to pass. But whatever it is, it isn’t good enough. And besides, how many times have you talked to someone who says, “I’m a registered Republican” or “I’m a registered Democrat”? They already think they are registered simply by virtue of registering to vote and supporting the party they favor. Why not follow through and do it properly?
It’s time for Virginians everywhere to let their representatives in the House of Delegates and the State Senate know that we’re “fed up and not going to take it anymore.” No more tricks of one side or another playing games trying to cause chaos in the other party by voting for the weakest link. Time for everyone to stop hiding in the shadows and make their declaration of party. If they find out they’re not happy, it’s a simple matter of changing your affiliation at the registrar’s office.
So there it is, have at it, blast me to kingdom come and back. But it’s my opinion (and I’m frequently right), and I’m sticking to it.
Trixie Averill has been a long-time activist and volunteer for Republican candidates, serving for 16 years on RPV’s State Central Committee including as Western Vice Chairwoman, then as chairman of the 6th Congressional District, and Virginia State Director for Americans for Prosperity. Throughout the years she has worked numerous campaigns including George W. Bush, George Allen, Bob McDonnell, Jim Gilmore, and Bill Bolling. Currently the vice-chairman of the Roanoke County Republican Committee, Trixie is also serving her third term on the Virginia Tourism Corporation Board of Directors. A military mom, her son Marcus served four tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan before returning to the Roanoke Valley. Trixie and husband Dan live in Roanoke County. They are the parents of two grown children, and enjoy their three grandchildren and two happy Westies.