I'm wondering if it's a good idea to allow casting close votes AND down votes.
Usually, when a user casts a close vote, they will also cast a downvote. This obviously doesn't happen all the time, but based on what I've seen across Stack Exchange, I would say it's fairly common.
Now this doesn't make any sense. Voting to close a question is the act of registering your opinion that the question has problems, and needs to either be edited or closed. Downvoting a question is the act of saying, as the description text says when you hover over the button, 'this question does not show any research effort; it is unclear or not useful.'
Are these two things the same? No. Certainly there can be some overlap, but they aren't the same. For example, you can have a perfectly researched, clear, and helpful question, and it still deserves to be closed because it's off topic for the site it's on. I've seen this many times. I've even seen users downvote a question simply because it was on the wrong SE site, even though it would be perfectly on-topic once migrated.
So, given that close votes and downvotes are the acts of registering two separate opinions, should a user be allowed to register them both? There are certainly questions which deserve to be closed AND downvoted, but not all of them. And if we're perfectly honest, is that one missed down/close vote really going to matter, if the question obviously needs to be deleted/closed? I doubt it.
So this is what I propose: make it so that if someone casts a close vote, they cannot downvote. And vice versa. If they downvote, they cannot vote to close that question.
What are the community's thoughts on this? Am I off my rocker, or is there something to this?