Local Republicans want to see officials more accountable through elections

One issue that still has to be settled before the Utah legislature adjourns is the issue of how state school board elections are conducted. The issue is important this year because a judge recently ruled that the current selection process is unconstitutional.

Many Republican legislators have said they want to make the school board races partisan. Gina Worthen, secretary of the Cache County Republican Party, says she is neutral on which way it goes.

“Partisan is fine. I would be for a non-partisan election as well,” Worthen explains. “I’m not, personally, in favor of the governor appointing the school board. I feel that parents and the public need to have a voice in education. That would be best served by being able to elect people to the board.”

The way it is now the governor picks two persons to go on the general election ballot after a statewide selection commission recommends several names to the governor. The citizens then choose their favorite of the two.

Another way of getting people into office is the caucus and primary system. The Utah Republican party has approved a proposal to use the caucus system instead of a primary next year when choosing the state’s GOP nominee for president.

The party’s governing committee voted Saturday to let the party pick a nominee at local caucus meetings. It would occur on a night where Republicans are also picking delegates to represent them at later nominating conventions for the state and county political offices.

Worthen says she feels like it is an awesome idea.

“I think it’s a great idea. I think it will get more people involved and hopefully give Utah a bigger voice.”

So who would local Republicans like to see elected as the next U.S. President? Worthen says a straw poll was taken at the recent Republican Lincoln Day Dinner. Scott Walker got the most votes with 27, followed by Jeb Bush who received 17 votes.

Ben Carson was a distant third receiving six votes. Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Chris Christie and Rick Perry all received three votes each. Asked who they thought would get the Democratic nomination, Hillary Clinton was the overwhelming choice with 52 percent of the vote in the straw poll.

Free News Delivery by Email

Would you like to have the day's news stories delivered right to your inbox every evening? Enter your email below to start!