Sorry for the length, but I didn't have time to write a short blog.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The Party Line

I take voting seriously. I have never really understood why anyone would vote for someone because they have an R or D by their name.    Still, even that is better than those who don't vote at all, especially in a state where every registered voter receives a ballot in the mail.  I also have never understood why the popularity of the president or which party is in the White House during midterms can expect to lose seats.  It seems to go against all logic. You vote for a president whose agenda is something you want and then turn around and vote for a party or allow a party to be voted in that will make sure the agenda cannot be achieved.  Make sense to you? Me either.

I also do not understand why the Republican led house has the lowest favorability rating in history expects to easily maintain its control. Not only will the Republicans maintain control of the House, but they are odds on favorites to gain control of the Senate. The logic of putting the same people in power back into power astounds me.  Never in our history have we had a government do so little to help its people or listen to them.

When I vote, I weigh what the candidates have done.  I must also admit when I see candidates that have catered to extreme groups, it makes my voting choice that much more simple.  I find it fascinating when a candidate who was once attacked by his own party in primaries as too wishy-washy is suddenly a strong leader who has a plan a few years later.

Ad campaigns use a term like "career politician" to describe an opponent. I hate to tell you this, but the guy approving the ad is also a "career politician." It also doesn't really matter if a politician has other members of the family in politics. It doesn't matter whether your father or cousin was a politician or a farmer.  What matters is the record. Politicians will, in fact, say just about any moderate sounding thing to get elected after having said all the correct extreme things in the primary to the base.  I will look to see what positive ads a politician has ran.  If he hasn't ran any or very few, I will probably not vote for him or her.  If he or she can only run against the other guy's record, it actually says something pretty positive about the other guy.

There have also been a few "anti-ads" that have actually made statements that pretty much ensures my vote going for the guy the ad is against.  As someone who has directly witnessed the damage TABOR has caused, announcing you will protect that law means you've probably lost my vote. The same goes if a politician attacks someone for supporting something I support.  I suppose that's why so many of the ads are vague.

I also look at, now, what dark money supports them.  Some groups, I don't have a problem with. These groups, in all honesty, are just trying to support a person who supports their interest.  Others operate through fear and lies. Others want to own the election.  These groups also frequently involve themselves in issues and not just candidates. For example, the group "Don't Turn Racetracks into Casinos," oppose the issue of Amendment 68.  This is the amendment that would give moneys to schools.  Don't Turn Racetracks into Casinos is funded primarily by Colorado Casinos. Gee, I wonder if they have an agenda they are protecting?

The fact is I try to do my research and make an informed decision.  I do not vote a party line. Even if the guy I voted for loses or the proposition fails, I had a say. I never have voted a party line, and I am hopeful others don't either.  I find it amusing when ads announce that Gardner supported Republican agenda or Udall voted for Democratic sponsored bills. Wow. If you are shocked by this, then you might want to try reading a newspaper or cereal box. Imagine a Democrat or a Republican voting with their party most of the time. Who knew such things could happen?

The point is you need to vote.  I am amazed at people who complain about the system but do nothing to change it.  I know.  I know.  You've heard it all. "If you are not a part of the solution, you are part of the problem" or  "if you don't vote, you have no voice."  And on and on... I have no platitudes.  It's not the faithful who don't vote.  The extremes will make sure they exercise their right.  Ignore the ads and the phone calls and the emails.  Even voting by a dart throw is more than sitting there.  There are plenty of folks out there counting on you not voting.  Show them they are wrong.  No poll votes and no poll should control the vote.  So I have one more cliche for you:

Every Vote Counts.

"Nobody will ever deprive the American people of the right to vote except the American people themselves-and the only way they could do this is by not voting." - Franklin D. Roosevelt

Please vote.