Committee of the Islands

Keeping Sanibel Special Since 1975

The Wisdom of Nonpartisan Elections

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October 25, 2008

The W isdom of Nonp artisan Elections The Sanibel City Charter states that “ All nominations and elections for the office of city councilper son shall be conducted on a non partisan basis without regard for or designation of political party affiliation of any nominee on any nomination petition or ballot . ” COTI is in agreement with Sanibel’s tradition of non partisan elections and will work towards its preservation . While the partisan system seems t o work w ell at the national and state levels , Sanibel elections would not be benefited by this approach . National part ies would not inform Sanibel residents on the unique issues face d by the island . The Sanibel Plan is a better place to look for guidance and inspiration with regards to solving local problems . Parti san politics would only make it more difficult to deal with the concerns facing Sanibel . Nonpartisan elections do not lead to p olitical tranquility . There has always been plenty of lively debate on Sanibel . The discourse has centered on the island ’ s un ique issues such as water quality , red drift algae , development , the environment , and the budget . Focusing on problem resolution , instead of national party affiliation , stands to better serve our island . People who have different national party affiliatio ns have often work ed together in support of island issues on which they agree . This kind of cooperation is important to preserving our sanctuary island . The nonpartisan clause of the Ci ty Charter has served Sanibel we ll in the past and will do so in the fu ture thanks to the wisdom of our founding fathers .

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