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Secretary Of State Confesses Frustration


It’s hard to tell what aggravates Louisiana Secretary of State Tom Schedler more: The expected low turnout for tomorrow’s statewide election, or the cost of holding it.


It costs $6 million here in Louisiana to run a statewide election,” Schedler said, speaking on C-Span last week. "It costs me the same amount of money to run a presidential election at close to 70 percent voter turnout as it will cost me to have a 12 percent voter turnout."

We can certainly put our money at better usages here in Louisiana, in my opinion,” he added.

The Secretary of State admits he’s not alone in fretting how to get more people to go vote.


"The biggest thing concerning all secretaries of state is the lack of participation across the country,” he said.


Schedler served in the state senate for a dozen years, and says he recognizes that people are frustrated, as well — with the political process.


"Just politics in general have reached an all-time low across this country. There’s no discussion. Everybody is in their corner," the Republican stated.“When everybody gets in their corner and decides to do nothing, everybody loses. And I think that’s the situation we have today."


Looking back to his time in the state legislature, he observed, "There used to be a reaching across the aisle; they’d compromise. That’s turned into a very dirty word now, ‘compromise.’ I mean, let’s face it: the population is absolutely at wit’s end, mad, frustrated at a national level, and it filters down to local government. Quite frankly, until that attitude changes, I do not know what to do about increasing voter turnout."


But like worrying, Schedler says, simply complaining about what’s happening politically does nothing to change it.


"People are complaining, but the best way to exercise that complaint is to go out and vote, and change something in an effective way."


Polls open tomorrow morning at 7 and close at 8 p.m.