According to an article at Oklahomans For Ballot Access Reform written by E. Zachary Knight, both the Daily Oklahoman and the Tulsa World, Oklahoma’s top two newspapers, support ballot access reform in Oklahoma.
The Tulsa World recently published an editorial about ballot access reform in support of Oklahoma HB2134. HB2134 recently passed the State House and has passed through the Senate Rules Committee. However, even if the bill in its current state passes, Oklahoma will STILL be the worst state in the country for ballot access. Rather than reverting the number of signatures required to form a new political party in the state to 5000, as it was prior to 1974, the bill would reduce the requirement of 5% of the number of voters in the most recent general election down to 2.5%.
The Daily Oklahoman published an article in December 2012 supporting ballot access reform in Oklahoma. In the article, it compared Oklahoma to the ballot access requirements in Colorado, where getting on the ballot
“only requires that candidate fork over $500 and provide an affidavit of intent.”
It also pointed out how, in both 2004 and 2008,
“Oklahomans had only two options for President, the Democrat or the Republican.”
This was true in the 2012 election as well.
These newspapers have realized that the wave of political philosophy is changing in America and the two-party paradigm is on its way out. Public opinion is turning away from the control that the two-party system has not only in Oklahoma but in the country overall. There is no better time in Oklahoma for the people to raise their voices and demand the need for ballot access reform. It is time to tell our leaders that our representatives should be elected on their principles, NOT on their party affiliation. The Democratic Party and the Republican Party have made it abundantly clear that they do not truly represent everybody. Not everybody’s political views can be described anymore by simply claiming loyalty to either of the two major players in the political system.
This is why the people of Oklahoma need more choices when they elect their representatives.
With the state’s two largest newspaper behind the ballot access reform efforts, is it possible that Oklahomans could soon have more choices at the polls?
Anything could happen.