MORRISON: Time for Illinois Republicans to reclaim the right to vote


As American citizens, we are proud that “we the people” have the freedom and the right to vote for our leaders. No matter the party affiliation, in our democracy we, by a majority vote, choose our elected officials and grant them authority to act on our behalf.


What’s the point? Every citizen of the United States of America has the right to vote, right? That’s true today, but don’t forget that not so long ago not everyone enjoyed that precious right of citizenship.


Black men weren’t allowed to vote until 1868. Women could not do so until 1920, Native Americans until 1947 and Washington, D.C., residents until 1963.


OK, you say, you remember your civics lessons from grade school, but what does that have to do with 2012 and the freedom to vote for our elected officials?


Would you be surprised to learn that Republican voters in Illinois cannot vote for their party’s leadership, the state central committeemen? The right to vote for these officials was rescinded by legislation about 30 years ago.


Was it a Democrat plot? No, sadly the right of GOP voters to cast a ballot for this party office was taken away by the Republican Party elite. They granted such voting rights only to Republican township, ward and precinct committeemen, eliminating the citizen’s right to vote.


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