In the most recent editions of the Press political profiles of candidates in the upcoming election have been published. The hope was to assist voters in making informed choices at the polls.
A vote should stand for something. It should not be cast for a candidate because you went to school with someone or their signs are plastered throughout the county. A vote is an indication that you are confident in a person’s ability to not only lead but to make educated decisions that will benefit the majority of the population.
In publishing the profiles the goal was to help constituents learn more about the candidates. The questionnaires sent to the all of the 105 candidates were identical. The only thing that was varied about the questionnaires was how the candidates chose to answer them. What has appeared on those pages is from the candidates’ own hands. The only editing Press staff did was if the candidates exceeded the 250-word limit imposed for answering each question.
In reviewing the questionnaires I noticed something- Campbell Countains have a choice this election year. We no longer have to vote the same people back into office because of a lack of options. In fact making a choice could be this year’s challenge. For the most part this crop of candidates is more educated, informed and grounded in the community than in years past.
This what the voters have been asking for, candidates with common sense who are relatively educated.
But let me say I only learned these tidbits by reading the candidates’ responses to the questionnaires. Their levels of education, or lack of, along with their qualifications and experience are contained in their responses to the questions posed to them by the Press- not on a sign propped up on the side of the road.
This election year could be pivotal for our community. We are at an economic crossroads. Voters must ask themselves what do they want for this community and whom do they want to lead the way?
If someone came to your office, handed you a card with their name on it and asked for a job would that be good enough to get hired? No.
We need to apply that same principle at the polls. Showing up at someone’s door, asking for a vote or to put a sign in their yard should not get the candidate the vote, or the office. As voters we need to have a higher expectations of those who lead us.
This begins by breaking the cycle of voting for someone because he is your neighbor or has the biggest sign.