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Friday, Dec. 19, 2014

Conventions don't meet voters' needs

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

In reading about plans for the upcoming Democratic and Republican national conventions, I have come to the conclusion that the political coronations are outdated and the process should be eliminated. There was a time when the suspense and political wheeling and dealing was a part of the convention process. That is simply no longer true.

Both New York City and Boston - sites of this year's conventions - will become virtual battlegrounds during the weeklong events. Both cities are now questioning whether the conventions are a financial bonanza. The convention talk is not about the political process but rather about protesters and terrorists. That is no way to highlight the parties or the candidates.

Presidential primary elections have now replaced the need for the conventions. Let's face it - the conventions are a weeklong political commercial designed to attract public attention. They are no more than a free commercial masquerading as some sort of political process. And, quite frankly, they are boring.

What astounds me is the police presence required at these conventions. Boston and New York will become police states for a week and very little public good will actually be served by the convention process itself.

And in this dangerous era, the conventions would provide a perfect avenue for terrorist activity. What better place to impact the American political process than at a nationally televised political event. Put simply, we should be smarter than this.

Let's change the process. Let's eliminate the costly conventions and go directly to the people. Have the candidates meet face-to-face more often in all parts of the country.

Allow the people to see the differences and hear the positions. A national convention does not offer that forum and it never will.

Like most Americans, I will watch little if any of the convention broadcast. I know the outcome before the first gavel comes down. Why waste my time to hear rhetoric from either political party. The pomp and circumstance is not worth the effort. And the convention process itself has long



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