The law with regard to straight party ticket voting has not changed since I was county attorney or county judge. A person can still vote a straight party ticket and cross over and vote for individual candidates in the other party and still have their straight party vote count for all those races where they did not select a candidate from another party. For example, let us say that I intended to vote straight party Republican this year, but I liked Democrat incumbent Judith Zaffirini as my state senator, I would mark the Straight Party Republican vote box and then go further down the ballot and find the State Senate race and mark Judith Zaffirini’s name. My vote would count for all the Republicans, except for Ms. Zaffirini’s Republican opponent, and it would count for her. While I don’t vote straight party ticket because I happen to believe that I need to intelligently and knowingly choose the best candidate for the job regardless of party affiliation, I know that political parties like to push that easy, unthinking option on voters.
Another misconception that many people have is that because they voted in the primary election of one party that they cannot vote for candidates of the other party in the general election. This is false! I might have voted in the Republican primary this spring, but in the general election this November I can vote for any candidate regardless of that candidate’s party affiliation. Ignorance is one of democracy’s greatest threats; unfortunately, in America, it can be a political party’s greatest ally. Don’t forget to vote!
Jose L. Aliseda Jr.