Here’s how the election was rigged

Without being able to vote in all elections, Americans are forced to choose the lesser of evils

The author, a former teacher and county commissioner in Josephine County, Ore., is a sustainable farmer.

As a government, economics and history teacher, I taught students that our country was founded on representative government. I also held an elected government position for eight years in addition to serving on numerous appointed boards and commissions at the local, state and federal levels.

I agree with Mr. Trump that the election was rigged in that the states held private party primary presidential elections at great public expense, while denying voters the ability to participate in a government-sponsored election. This violates the very basis of representative government, the Constitution and a citizen’s right to vote.

In the presidential primaries, I along with every other voter in the United States could not vote in every political party’s election. Although there were many primary elections conducted in my state and jurisdiction, I had a say in only one of these elections. The Constitution is very clear that all voters participate in all elections. Voting is the cornerstone to having a functional representative government.

The fact that all voters couldn’t participate in all primary presidential elections resulted in political parties choosing nominees. Unfortunately, this rigged primary election set up a conundrum. Voters were forced to choose the candidate they disliked the least or throw their vote away on a no-chance candidate.

Until voters are able to vote in all government-sponsored elections, they will continue to have to choose the lesser of evils in the general election. There is no mention of political parties in the Constitution, but the right to vote and what elections voters may participate in is quite clear. Therefore, political party representatives who are chosen in government-sponsored “private elections” can’t possibly represent voters as required by the Constitution.

The solution to the rigged 2016 election is to hold new primaries and a new general election that meets constitutional requirements. Unless there are new elections, Mr. Trump will not be able to represent all voters. While new elections are inconvenient, the alternative is likely to be much worse for the country. Citizens will be justified in saying “my vote doesn’t count.”