Letters to the Editor

Parties should pay for primaries

Marina and Arnulfo Ruiz decide on who to vote for at a polling place in Schenectady, N.Y.
Marina and Arnulfo Ruiz decide on who to vote for at a polling place in Schenectady, N.Y. Associated Press

Political parties should pay for primaries

Re “Clinton, Trump win big” (Page 1A, April 20): This primary season shines a harsh light on the undemocratic machinations used by the major parties that adopt customized, byzantine rules in each state to run primaries and select delegates to the national conventions.

This undemocratic, skewed process heavily favors party insiders and denies independent voters any influence over candidates for the most important of all elected offices. If primary elections are for the electorate to choose the candidates to face each other in the general election, then the notion of states conducting primaries that deny participation to registered voters who are not members of the Republican or Democratic parties is a fatally flawed concept that taxpayers should not finance.

Operating closed primaries is the equivalent of having a members-only event at an exclusive club. In those circumstances, the Republican Party and Democratic Party should pay 100 percent of the costs now born by taxpayers to operate those elections.

Gregory Ptucha,


More coverage for undocumented?

Re “Medi-Cal to expand health coverage to undocumented kids” (Insight, April 21): I am sorry about the Gonzalez family’s plight with getting health care coverage for their oldest son, Felix. But I also feel it was irresponsible of the family, after coming to the U.S. as undocumented immigrants with their one son, when he was 5 and then having three more sons after that.

How sad that soon 170,000 more undocumented children will be covered by Medi-Cal. Where is this money going to come from? We need to take care of our legal children first.

Irene Stadt, Carmichael

Questions for the politicians

Is it possible that there will be a number of unintended consequences from this Medi-Cal extension? Will illegal immigrants move to California from other states so their children can get free health care? Is this setting a precedent for current politicians that want to expand Medi-Cal to adult illegal immigrants?

If California’s illegal population increases, does it put a strain on our already deteriorating infrastructure like water, roads, schools, etc.? Have politicians asked and answered these questions before giving away taxpayers’ dollars?

John Hightower,


Is Obamacare really working?

Re “UnitedHealth Group to leave exchanges in all but ‘handful’ of states” (Business, April 20): If the nation’s largest health insurer is exiting most of 34 states where it offers plans under Obamacare, it seems like the intention of the Affordable Care Act is not working.

Rob Fowler, Cameron Park

Effects of climate change on Houston

Re “Deluge submerges home, highways in Houston area” (Page 7A, April 19): The record-breaking storm in Houston led me to believe that climate change was the culprit. Climate change exacerbates many of our weather extremes, which leads to events like the flooding in Houston. There seems to be an endless procession of freak events that challenge record books.

Valerie Bane, Sacramento

Earth Day for our grandchildren

Earth Day is a time to celebrate the beauty and abundant life on the only home we have. Also, a time to reflect on whether we are taking care of our home so that our descendants, too, can thrive.

I’m elderly now and want nothing more than a healthy planet for our grandchildren. We must address climate change for their sakes. There is an elegant solution that would allow free markets to move us all to clean energy in the quickest, most efficient manner possible. We need a federal fee on carbon at the source with all revenue returned to American households to offset any cost increases.

Christine Bailey,

Gold River


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