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Libertarian candidate for Detroit city clerk aims to empower voters with transparency, fairness

Scotty Boman
Scotty Boman,
LP Michigan
Candidate for
Detroit City Clerk

Detroit, Mich., has been a city in decline for years, but Libertarian Scotty Boman is ready to help turn that around in his campaign for city clerk. In this position, Boman would oversee city records and elections, and his plans to increase government transparency would allow citizens to make informed decisions about how taxpayer funds are wasted and where they can make dramatic cuts to city spending.

"Transparency could prevent a lot of wasteful spending," Boman said. He pointed out that Detroit expenditures are today reported in broad strokes, lumping large sums of money into a few spending categories with only vague terminology that describes where the funds actually go.

"One piece of information that should be easy to list includes the salaries of our elected officials," Boman wrote on his campaign website. "I would make that kind of information easy to find. I would also post detailed audits, so the public would know exactly how their money is being spent."

With Libertarian oversight over city records, Boman would be able to report exactly how and where every dollar is spent. "I think that would prevent a lot of waste," he said.

As city clerk, Boman would also have the power to make elections more fair for third parties.

"We had a voter guide go out with five political parties listed in the sample ballot," Boman said. "But there was a giant elephant and a giant donkey on the front page, giving the impression that there are only two parties. That promotion of some political parties over others is a partisan activity, and providing the other alternatives, including Libertarians, would give people a way to cut government."

Eliminating this de facto form of support for the dominance of Republicans and Democrats in the electoral process would allow candidates with real solutions for change to have a chance at the ballot box, he said.

Detroit residents are often confused about where and how to vote, with district polling locations changed and poll workers who lack accurate information about those changes. Boman noted that a recent mayoral candidate was even disqualified from the ballot because he had followed the faulty directions of the mistaken city clerk. Boman hopes that transparency about the electoral process, at every step, will provide Detroit voters with the tools they need to regain control of the city government.

A life-long Michigan resident, Boman has also been an LP activist for decades, having arrived at his libertarian views about 30 years ago. He said that he had been exposed only to the flawed "left-right paradigm" when he was younger, and gradually came to realize that his views didn't fall on that spectrum.

"I had a deep-seated feeling that there was something wrong with people telling other people what to do with their personal lives," he said.

Boman has served as LP Michigan chair, and brings substantial campaign experience to his race for city clerk. Most recently, he ran for U.S. Senate in the 2012 election. Detroit voters can cast their ballots for Scotty Boman as city clerk on August 6.