Wednesday, May 19, 2010

If only I lived in Bridgeport Nebraska....

....then my non-voting might matter!

BRIDGEPORT, Neb. – A deck of cards and a bit of luck helped decide who will likely be the next sheriff of Morrill County.

The nine of hearts Milo Cardenas drew Monday beat Travis Petersen's six of spades, giving Cardenas the Republican nomination for sheriff. Since no Democrats ran for sheriff, Cardenas, the police chief in Bridgeport, is likely to win in November's election.

"I knew it was going to be close, but I didn't expect to be this close," Cardenas said.

The two men agreed to cut a deck of cards after Monday's re-count confirmed that both finished at the top of a four-man race with 379 votes after balloting ended last Tuesday. State law requires tied elections to be settled by a game of chance.

Cardenas said deciding the race with a card game seemed a little crazy but also seemed like the best option.

"I felt more comfortable with the deck of cards. That way you pick your own destiny," Cardenas said.

Brandt shuffled the cards seven times and spread them out on a table before the candidates drew cards simultaneously.

"People wanted to revote and do a lot of things, but unfortunately, Nebraska law is very clear," Morrill County Clerk Kathy Brandt said.

Brandt said none of the candidates who lost in the primary are allowed to run in the general election.

"For all those people that didn't vote, they should realize that one vote does make a difference," Brandt said.

Two points about the Morrill County Clerk, people.

(1) "unfortunately, Nebraska law is very clear"?? WTF? given that people wanted to "do a lot of things", I think it's very fortunate that the law was clear.

(2) Ms. Brandt also seems to have a very low bar for defining "making a difference"! Were these two Republican candidates for Morrill County Sheriff really so different from each other?


Barry said...

It’s a good story. I think Mungo would approve the solution; Angus, who did the snarky comment, is just miffed because he doesn’t vote and doesn’t think it makes a difference.

My state of Nebraska does pretty well with state government – the Unicameral does no worse than the two-house system every other state has and operates at a lower cost. In fact, it's written into the state Constitution that state legislators are only paid $12,000 per year. (Voters haven't approved a raise since 1988 and I'm guessing they won't any time soon, either.) The other notable accomplishment is that state legislators voted years ago to make the Meadowlark the state bird. Hard to argue with that. What's Oklahoma got? A two-house legislature and the Scissor-Tailed Flycatcher?! C'mon.

Anonymous said...

State law requires tied elections to be settled by a game of chance

Aren't games of chance forbidden by the Bible or something? How did a church lovin state like Nebraska give them state sanction?

Barry said...

Well, we like to use marked cards in Nebraska. That eliminates the chance aspect to the game and lets the theological among us sleep well. The contesting politicians are kept in the dark about what the marks mean, thereby keeping it fair.