BEACH CITIES DEMOCRATIC CLUB -- January 2005 Newsletter, page 1 --

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P.O. Box 2192, Redondo Beach, CA 90278
January 2005

Next Meeting

Tuesday, January 25, 7:30 PM
David K. Hayward Center
2000 Artesia Boulevard
Redondo Beach

Democrats are off to a busy start this year. Our January speaker was not confirmed at press time, but we're hoping to hear from LA City Councilwoman Janice Hahn on the Port of LA -- issues of security, traffic, and pollution. Other items on the agenda are local elections and the newly elected LA County Committee.

Bob Brigham Honored

Our longtime member Bob Brigham was the recipient of two highly coveted awards in 2004. He was named the Lions

Club Citizen of the Year and the Manhattan Beach Chamber of Commerce Rose and Scroll winner. In 2002, Bob was honored as Outstanding Teacher, Administrator, and Supporter at Mira Costa High School, where he taught for 36 years.

Public service runs in Bob's family: his father was in the Lions Club. Also, says Bob, “I am proud to say my father (a lifelong Democrat!) and I are the only father-son combination to get the Rose and Scroll.”

He thinks this will be his last award “because after 65 years in this town, my wife (here since 1952) and I will be moving to Paso Robles.”

“Will we miss Manhattan? Of course. But Democrats are few in number up there, and we are going in as reinforcements. Help is on the way!”

We will sure miss Bob.

This Is Democracy?


The quickest way to undermine people’s confidence in the electoral system is to fail to count their votes accurately – or not to count them at all.

We'll never know just how many thousands of people had their votes vanish into thin air in November thanks to the more than 900 documented electronic voting machine problems across the country. Down in San Diego, thousands of voters weren't disenfranchised by electronic voting machines. Instead, as ridiculous as it sounds, their ballots were simply ignored by the registrar of voters who decided that because they didn't fill in an oval next to a write-in candidate's name, there was no way to determine who those voters intended to vote for.

More than 5,500 write-in voters failed to fill in the oval and the decision to ignore the clear intent of those

voters by excluding their ballots changed the outcome of the mayor's race.

Beyond the intent of the voters there's also the intent of the law to consider. The requirement to fill in an oval next to the write-in candidate's name wasn't designed to make it harder for people to vote for a write-in candidate. Rather, it was designed for the convenience of the registrars so they could run ballots through a tabulator without having to look at each one to see if a candidate's name had been written in.

Democracy is about making sure elections reflect the will of the voters. As we continue to look at modernizing California's voting systems, what happened in San Diego is a reminder that any failure to accurately reflect the intent of the voters only serves to undermine our democracy. Like you, I don't have a particular stake in who is elected as San Diego's mayor, but I do have an investment in the integrity of our electoral system. Don't we all?

E-mail Delivery of Newsletters


If you received this newsletter or the November one by US mail instead of e-mail, it is because (1) we do not have your e-mail address, (2) you have informed us that you prefer hard copy, or (3) because of an e-mail delivery problem.

In November, over 60 e-mails we sent were undeliverable, either because we had an incorrect or no-longer-in-service address or because some other problem prevented delivery. For example, your Internet Service Provider (ISP) might have blocked mail from our mailing service,, your mailbox might have been

full, or you might have unsubscribed using the Unsubscribe link on any ConstantContact mail that you received from us.

We urge all members with Internet access to take delivery of the newsletter via e-mail to save the club printing and mailing costs. If you have been receiving the newsletter in hard-copy form and are willing to receive it via email, please notify Steve Zucker (

Please note that “e-mail delivery” consists of an e-mail containing a link to the club's website, http://www.lafn. org/politics/bcdc/, which you may visit at any time. The newsletter is available there in both HTML form and PDF.

Visit our Website at / politics / bcdc

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