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Letter: In Sanbornton, the rule of many by the few

Senate Bill 2 would be unnecessary in Sanbornton if the 570 residents who voted in the general election had bothered to attend the 2012 town meeting. Sadly, only 149 residents attended town meeting, which is the reason SB 2 is on the Sanbornton ballot again this year.

For those who say that to eliminate town meeting is to eliminate the last bastion of direct democracy in the United States, I respond that if SB 2 allows nearly five times the number of residents to vote on the town budget, questions and warrant articles in the privacy of the voting booth, then SB 2 is nearly five times more democratic than town meeting.

For those who say that if people are really interested in the town they would attend town meeting,” my response is that this attitude denies the vote to those who work in the evenings, can’t find or afford a baby sitter, are not comfortable driving at night, can’t physically sit through a three- to five-hour meeting, aren’t comfortable speaking up in public, or are away in the military.

Today town meeting is not the bastion of democracy it once was.

Rather, it is the rule of the many by the few.



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