Burning Question: Should government employees be prohibited from voting?

Pat Sajak, the host of TV's Wheel of Fortune, has some questions about conflicts of interest and government employees.

In a post at Ricochet, he says, "None of my family and friends is allowed to appear on Wheel of Fortune. Same goes for my kids' teachers or the guys who rotate my tires." So, he asks, "should state workers be able to vote in state elections on matters that would benefit them directly? The same question goes for federal workers in federal elections."

Sajak seems to quickly grasp the widespread implications of his question. "I'm not suggesting that public employees should be denied the right to vote, but that there are certain cases in which their stake in the matter may be too great." Those, he writes, could include ballot initiatives about benefits for state workers.

Since there are no federal ballot initiatives, presumably Sajak wouldn't be in favor of restricting the voting rights of feds. But he acknowledges his proposal "opens a Pandora's box in terms of figuring out what constitutes a true conflict of interest."

Public Employees and Elections: A Conflict of Interest?
(Ricochet)

Burning Question is a recurring feature that looks at key issues and compelling stories being explored at other publications and social media sites.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
X CLOSE Don't show again

Like us on Facebook