Now things get interesting.
We have a veritable horde of candidates for US Senator this time. A Democratic incumbent. A couple solid Republicans. Democrats who are protesting the incumbent. Republican who got into the race before the party-sponsored dude showed up. And the Perennials - candidates who regularly show up on the ballot, running for something.
The Muni league will not help us here. Vote-For-Judges? Sorry, not their bailiwick. We are on our own with this one.
We do have the Voters' Guide, which is the various campaigns' level platform to talk to the voters. Everyone gets their turn at the mike. Some use it as chance to connect with their audience. Some use it to introduce and define themselves. Some use it to identify pressing issues. And some use it as a moment to leap off into the abyss.
So into this heart of darkness we go - Oh, one more thing - [Spoiler Alert!]. I'm going to be supporting Patty Murray, the Mom in Sneakers who has grown into quite an effective political elbow-thrower in office. I know, you're surprised.
Norma Gruber has no entry in the Voters' Guide, and as such cannot be mocked. However, she gets top billing on the ballot, and I bet she still gets more votes than some of these people.
Mohammad H. Said is a perennial, ran against Murray six years ago. His statement reads like free verse. Supports Obama (I think), and feels he could have been his Secretary of Health (This just in: We don't have a Secretary of Health at the national level. We have a Secretary of Health and Human Services).
Goodspaceguy is another perennial ("Ten times, voters rejected Goodspaceguy’s economic program!" - he says under "Elected Experience"). He believes that the answer to our problems is in development in spaaaaaace. Should be commended for running for a position that actually has influence in this area.
Mike the Mover, perennial. Uses his space to attack Wall Street and college football coaches. First use of the phrase 'fake boobs' in a Voters' Pamphlet.
Paul Akers is a Republican that actually presents a plan. I have some doubts about how it would work out, but HEY, it's a PLAN. Supports a balanced budget amendment and term limits. I like this. More, please.
Mike Latimer is running a pro-God platform. "We have kicked God out of our schools, out of our government and out of many of our churches along with His laws." Which, except for the Pledge of Allegiance, our money, and all those sermons and politicians invoking her, is pretty accurate.
James (Skip) Mercer is a UW Professor, who wants to deal with the debt, illegal immigration, and keeping Afghanistan from becoming another Viet Nam. Disagree with some of his points, but sounds sane. I'd like to see him and Paul Akers get together and chat.
Clint Didier went to three Super Bowls, has a game plan, is endorsed by Sarah Palin, and is running as an outsider. And I will be honest, he shows an honesty in his beliefs that I can respect, even though I disagree almost completely with those beliefs. He would be a good candidate, bringing a lot to the table for discussion. He also would be a horrible senator.
Shalk Leonard is not talking political donations and the Seattle Weekly has nice things to say about him. America also talks to him. And I think he's dogwhistling isolationism, but he's darned poetic about it.
Patty Murray loves her some italic fonts. What she says is pretty boilerplate - pro job creation, anti Wall Street, pro-education and pro-Veterans, and her resume backs her up. But she sure uses a lot of italics.
Bob Burr wants you to know that we're living in a plutocracy, and that we're not doing enough for financial reform and energy. He also supports public finance for elections.
William Edward Chovil - I give you his statement in full "What kind of America do Americans want? The one our founders planned for us? The one America's anti-founders are giving us now? I am pro-life, pro-liberty, pro-gun, pro-audacity, pro-Sarah Palin, and John Gault, Pro-charter schools and home schools. I am against cap and trade, against Obama Care, and against the new-world-order." Makes Clint Didier look all moderate, doesn't he? (And it is spelled John GALT - please correct that in your home school syllabus).
Dino Rossi is a perennial (two tries for Governor) and a latecomer to this race, but has the advantage that he's the "official" GOP candidate. Condemns the massive deficit, but fails to note that we've piled up the bulk of it in GOP administrations. Starts the statement that we're in trouble but finishes that our best days are ahead of us. In the past has tried to remain as nebulous, happy talking, and nonthreatening as possible, but the presence of viable conservative alternatives have actually made him take some positions as he tries to win the middle without cheesing off the base.
Charles Allen has a list, and it is quite a list: Rebuild our manufacturing base, expand our industries, restore entrepreneurial spirit, dramatically cut Federal spending, reduce our national debt, fight to protect our environment, reform American energy policy, lay the building blocks of a green economy, ending the war, improve health car, make in-state tuition free, fund our teachers, police, and firemen, and be completely transparent. What's not to love?
Will Baker. FACT: Perennial. FACT: Uses his "Community Service" space in the form to lay into Secretary of State Sam Reed for not printing up these Voters' Guides. FACT: Uses his "Statement" space to argue that the biggest issue of the 2010 campaign is whether Obama used political shenanigans in his congressional race of 1996. FACT: He also the word "FACT" a lot.
There you have it, my friend, the fruits of democracy. The problem with it is that they let anyone in.
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