Time to go vote for something…

Elections – don’t ya just love ’em?

With California’s direct primary election just days away, I’m sure plenty of potential voters – some of whom might actually be registered – are scratching their heads in bewilderment over the diverse selection of politicians and measures seeking their endorsement on Election Day.

Admittedly, picking the right candidate is no easy choice – just check out the past decade or so of decisions we’ve made at the polls.

The great majority of us spend most of our time agonizing over the selection of the least worst candidate or proposition on the ballot, and still wind up kicking ourselves into insensibility over our choices a year or so later.

Sad as it may seem, not all of us have the time to attend every political debate, read through every voters packet and peruse every piece of campaign literature that comes our way.

Fortunately, there are a few general guidelines that we can all follow to help get us through Election Day with a minimum of future repercussions.

For example, consider campaign signage.

If you come across a candidate who’s got something like 33 campaign signs on every block, you should probably steer clear of him.

At the very least, all those signs are annoying. They also tell the voter that the candidate in question has spent something like $7.5 million on a collection of communitywide eyesores. If this guy can squander that kind of money on an excess of unsightly campaign signs, what’s he going to do with our taxpayer dollars if and when he’s elected?

On the other hand, the candidate who thinks that tacking up three posters painted by his 9-year-old granddaughter constitutes a slam-bang campaign also bears watching. In political circles, this is the kind of candidate we refer to as an idiot…

Beware, too, the political hopeful who spends all his time slamming an opponent’s record, personality and sexual preferences while telling you absolutely nothing about himself. This guy either has no political platform of his own or he’s keeping away from his own political record because he’s wanted on felony arrest warrants in three states.

Then there are the guys who attach themselves very loosely to the coattails of famed – preferably dead – statesmen in order to make their point.

In Tuesday’s election, for example, there’s at least one organization (which shall remain nameless) that begins its printed argument against a much-debated regional transportation measure with the words of former President Ronald Reagan: “There they go again!”


I’m sure the late president at one time also said, “Everybody in the pool!” and “Honey, have you seen my burgundy cummerbund?” but I’ll be damned if I can figure out what any such statement has to do with a 2006 transportation measure in Solano County.

Just dense, I guess…

Originally published June 4, 2006