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Los Angeles wants to give gifts for you to vote

Alarmed that fewer than one-fourth of voters are showing up for municipal elections, the Los Angeles Ethics Commission voted Thursday to recommend that the City Council look at using cash prizes to lure a greater number of people to the polls.

On a 3-0 vote, the panel said it wanted City Council President Herb Wesson's Rules, Elections and Intergovernmental Relations Committee to seriously consider the use of financial incentives and a random drawing during its elections, possibly as soon as next year.

Depending on the source of city funds, the idea could require a ballot measure. Commissioners said they were unsure how big the prizes should be or how many should be offered, saying a pilot program should first be used to test the concept.

"Maybe it's $25,000 maybe it's $50,000," said Commission President Nathan Hochman. "That's where the pilot program comes in -- to figure out what ... number and amount of prizes would actually get people to the voting box."

Only 23% percent of registered voters cast ballots in last year's mayoral election, prompting suggested solutions from an array of civic leaders. On Tuesday, turnout in a special school board election fell below 10%, according to preliminary numbers.

The idea of an election day lottery came up Thursday during an appearance by Wesson before the commission. During that discussion, Hochman suggested that surplus matching funds -- money provided to candidates who agree to certain spending restrictions -- could cover the cost of election day prizes.

That dialogue with Wesson, Hochman said, spurred the commission to act a few hours later.

"When I heard that he really wants to consider this, and was enthused and excited about this out-of-the-box idea, I thought, 'Let’s get an action item before his committee,'" Hochman said.

Wesson said he was indeed intrigued by the idea of a drawing or lottery but would first want to hear what neighborhood councils, his colleagues and assorted "legal beagles" think about the idea.

"I can’t wait to have this conversation," he said. "But don’t get me wrong. Don't think I’m going to run around being the poster child" for the proposal.

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The politicians in my area love the low turn-out for

non-presidential general elections. They just put the worst crap on the ballot for those elections and their lackeys can rock the vote.

Defend Liberty!

I think

LA is beyond redemption. The only thing that will save them is total collapse. :(

I don't believe that

I just don't think liberty candidates or libertarian candidate focus enough there. I believe California is very libertarian, but people mistake it for full on liberalism.

A bit shocking

Effectively, it seems, they are aiming to persuade the youth and poor which is the demographic that would most respond to this incentive.

Not to mention how quickly this will get corrupted.

What do they care how many people vote, anyway? What does it matter to them?

Ok, this isnt good.

If they wanted to give out like one dollar(etc) to every single person who showed up, ok, that seems equal, doing it any other way is asking for corruption and in fact this probably shouldnt be done to begin with.

To climb the mountain, you must believe you can.

$25,000 cash prize...

$250,000 study to determine which amount would be most feasible given the known parameters consistent with established protocols evidenced by...

Defeat the panda-industrial complex

I am dusk icon. anagram me.


Isn't this bribery?


It is a form of it, cause who ever gives the gifts will get the votes.