I’ll save you some of my normal ranting; Max’s monograph on the topic was so much better and less bitter than I could muster.
I was reading the Virginia official elections and voting site this evening – probably the first time I’d done so since I was in the newspaper biz – and found some interesting tidbits in preparation for my trip to the optical scanner in November.
Our longtime Democratic congressional incumbent is unopposed for the first time since 1982. That’s 13 election cycles and 26 years, and I covered 7 of those elections in some form or another. I can also say that, in all but two of those elections, he was effectively unopposed because of the quality of candidate.
Virginia actually has six slates of presidential/vice presidential candidates. Besides the Republican and Democrat doom and gloom, the slate is damn near a political Baskin Robbins with Green, Independent Green, Libertarian, and whatever the hell Ralph Nader is calling himself this year.
Oh, Nader’s an Independent. How cute.
Maybe I won’t have to write in Eisenhower and Nixon this year after all.
For our city council (and I use the word ‘city’ loosely, since this place has less than 4,000 residents, shares its court and clerk system with the surrounding county, and somehow manages to keep a city charter it bogarted from the Virginia General Assembly in 1954 – a city it ain’t.) I see two people with whom I went to high school and college, respectively. They’re both reasonable folk, so I’ll probably choose them over the asshole scion of the now-dead owner of the local Pepsi bottling franchise and the guy of whom I know little other than the fact that he ran for council once before and left the same impact of a 5.56 mm bullet against titanium plate armor.
Our last asshole former Republican governor Jim Gilmore (as opposed to the prior asshole former Republican governor George Allen – Google ‘macaca’ for more) is running for U.S. Senate against the next to last Democrat former governor who did a pretty good job of cleaning up Gilmore’s immediate toxic political spillage. When two senior Republican legislators and a rather honorable former Republican governor (and father-in-law of the current Democratic governor) appear in ads and campaign appearances to endorse the Democrat, one would think that Gilmore would have gotten the message.
This, of course, merely proves that Gilmore is, in fact, an asshole and a not-very-smart one.
And then there’s the ‘city’ school board race. I used to cover that school board. I think I’ll write i, “Consolidate with the county, finally!”
With all the heartburn from reading the site, all I can say is that I can still cuss, spit, gripe and – in the end – go down and vote about it without the fear of being spied upon, trailed by state security, picked up, interrogated or executed.
Unless, of course, I vote in Florida.
If any of you reading this live in Virginia, you have until close of business Monday, Oct. 6, to go register to vote in this November’s general elections.