Roanoke Del. Sam Rasoul unveils Good Government legislation
Del. Sam Rasoul (D-Roanoke) has announced that he will put forward a Good Government legislation package during the 2016 legislative session. The package will consist of three bills to address fairness in government.
- Open Primaries: Also known as “Top 2” primaries, all candidates for an office would participate in the same open primary with the top two vote-getters advancing to the general election, regardless of party. This can produce two Democrats or two Republicans running against each other, forcing the debate to be less extreme as more of the focus shifts to the general electorate. The result is more competitive elections and equal participation for all voters.
- Term limits: A bill to place term limits on all members of the General Assembly would limit elected officials to twelve years of service, or six terms for Delegates and three for Senators.
- Redistricting: Delegate Rasoul will continue to push for an independent redistricting commission that will put more power back in the hands of voters and help stop the practice of gerrymandering.
About his legislation package, Delegate Rasoul said, “Creating a more functional and ethical government remains one of my top priorities as an elected official. We must give more power back to the voters and restore trust in politics. The current system often results in little competition and choice for citizens, which does not give people the best representation and transparency.
“The fight for fair redistricting continues because voters should choose their politicians, not the other way around. Open primaries would bring more competition into elections and would not favor incumbents so overwhelmingly. This method has shown very positive results in states like Nebraska. Finally, term limits on members of the General Assembly would help to restore independent judgment on the major issues affecting the Commonwealth, rather than too much focus being placed on getting reelected,” he said.
The bills in Delegate Rasoul’s Good Government legislation package will be introduced in the General Assembly when the 2016 session convenes in January.