OPINION: Never vote a straight party ticket & how to write in a candidate’s name

Remember when your Mom asked you: If Johnny jumped off the bridge, would you?

Your Mother was giving you really good advice; she was encouraging you to be your own person. To investigate and to find out as much as you can about any situation in live rather than just following the parade.


Take this example, for instance.  This “Jump Johnny” message is insolent and just plain stupid. When voting on Tuesday using the Republican or Democratic primary ballot, do not follow the non-thinking “Jump Johnny” taunting. Vote for the candidate based on your knowledge of the individual’s character.

On Tuesday in this election, if you’re registered Republican or Democratic, you’ll be given a ballot populated by names of persons seeking the party anointment for the office in the general election in November. Many candidates for school board of directors cross-file in both parties because school board of directors are supposed to be apolitical, in spite of the Columbia Republican Committee’s “Jump Johnny” taunt.

Oh, if you’re not registered in either of the “look-alike” parties, you cannot vote — how’s that for representative democracy. This could all be eliminated with “open primaries.” But that’s too radical.

Here’s the sample ballot for Tuesday for registered Republicans.

repub sample ballot 1Side 1

repub ballot page 2Side two

Note registered Republicans may vote for NOT MORE THAN FIVE candidates for School Board Director and NOT MORE THAN FOUR candidates for Borough Councillor.

Here’s the sample ballot for Tuesday for registered Democrats.

demo sample ballotNote registered Democrats may vote for NOT MORE THAN FIVE candidates for School Board Director and NOT MORE THAN FOUR candidates for Borough Councillor.

Now, you may have this question. How can I vote for someone whose name is not on the ballot. Good question, because there are at least several persons who are not on the ballot who’ve been campaigning for office.

 Robert Misciagna is campaigning for a School Board Director position.

Tanya Minnick is campaigning for a borough councillor position.

Whether you’re registered with either party, you may write in any person to serve in any capacity.

According to the Lancaster County Board of Elections, here’s the procedure for any write-in vote:

The Lancaster County Board of Elections recommends that all write-in candidates provide cards to voters with the candidate’s name clearly printed on the card. It is also recommended that the candidate ask the voter to print the name on the ballot — exactly as it appears — on the information card. The use of self-inking stamps or stickers as a means of voting for a write-in candidate, while not prohibited by law, is discouraged because of the potential for damage to the voting machines.

Once the election is concluded, the Board of Elections must certify the results. For write-in candidates, PA Election Code 25 P.S. § 3155 requires that the board must compute and certify votes exactly as the names were written on the ballot. The results of the certification process will appear on the Lancaster County website and be posted in the Registration Office. Election results are required to be certified on June 10, 2019.

As indicated above, the Board of Elections must certify votes cast on ballots exactly as names are written on the ballot and may not group similar names together. For example, for a candidate having the name John C. Lancaster, votes cast for John C. Lancaster, J. Lancaster, J. C. Lancaster, and Jon Lancaster would all appear separately on the certification.

Here are the announced write-in candidates’ printed collateral pieces; you may take them into your polling place to make sure you spell their name correctly if you decide to write-In their names when you vote — IN EITHER BALLOT.





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