Letter to the editor: We need responsible voters
In her plea for automatic voter registration, state Rep. Sara Innamorato makes the common (common to Democrats, at least) mistake of conflating the principles of economics with those of government (“It’s time for automatic voter registration in Pa.,” Feb. 9, TribLIVE).
In commerce, input from everyone gives the market information it needs to efficiently provide the greatest amount of stuff for the greatest number. Business is utilitarian and amoral, and it works great.
On the other hand, the principles of good government are ethical. The job of government is to protect the state from external threats and preserve the rights of the people. Government may also provide public services unless doing so abrogates individual rights. While a dumb or unethical consumer still contributes to efficient markets, a dumb or unethical voter causes harm. Good government depends on voters who bother to learn something about political philosophy, ethics and economics … people who understand and care about the principles of good government and vote for candidates who will uphold them.
A voter registration system that requires a bit of effort at least ensures that those registered have some foresight and initiative. Automatic voter registration just serves to enable voter fraud and exploitation.