Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Ideal Politics

Now that election day is over - here are some things I would like to see (ideally) in politics:

  1. Two candidates running against each other who canvas together, advertise together, and publicly seek to achieve 100% voting in the area covered by the office they are seeking.
    • I could just imagine two candidates who have different views coming before the voters and saying "Vote for me, or vote for him, just vote."
    • I could imagine mailings and flyers where one side presented the views of one candidate and the other side presented the views of the other candidate. The bottom would read "Paid for by the committee to elect the next representative of State House District #21"
  2. No negative campaigning - that would be necessary for #1 to work
If those things were to happen I think we could have real political dialog happening, and we could hardly fail to get good people elected - I can imagine that only good people would engage in such a campaign.

I know this is extremely idealistic. I would be very surprised to ever see such a thing.

Now for some results of yesterdays elections.

Nationally, NPR has a story on how the base of the GOP failed on election day. I think they got the story backwards. It would be more accurate to say that the GOP failed the voters before election day. Thus the results at the polls.

I also saw that Donald Rumsfeld is resigning as Secretary of Defense. This is good news, but a few years later than it should have been.

Voters chose not to retain Judge Leslie Lewis. This means that voters were getting the information being presented about her. To put this result in context - 54% of voters voted not to retain her. All other judges were retained, receiving between 88.32% and 76.55% support for retention. In other words Judge Lewis received 30 percentage points less support from voters than any other judge in this election. Now the question is - does it require the kind of negative publicity that Judge Lewis received to make voters drop a sitting judge? While I believe that the majority of judges do a good job, I still believe that voters suffer from a dearth of information on their judges so it is difficult to make meaningful choices with our ballots where judges are concerned.

The opinion question that I felt was under-publicized passed with over 66% support. I don't think that indicates a good campaign for the issue since every ballot issue on my local ballot passed with similarly high margins. Some of them probably should not have passed - at least not that easily.

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