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Elections versus appointments of local county officials

Popular election of most government officials is an important feature of American democracy. The merits of electing versus appointing particular officials, especially on a localized level, are widely debated. Some argue that holding elections for those in non-representational positions such as County Clerk or Treasurer needlessly politicizes a position and deprioritizes the required quantitative skills. Others point to the need for transparency, contending that the appointment of office-holders by those within the government encourages bureaucratic cronyism. Elections can ensure that officials are attuned to the general population’s concerns and desires.

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