By Neil Williamson
As I write this , we are winding down the 2008 election. The polls open in just 24 hours. It is predicted voters will go to the polls in record numbers. Anecdotal evidence in our region shows absentee voting up dramatically. The Free Enterprise Forum strongly encourages you to vote.
As a nonpartisan organization, we have no endorsement to offer. We do have an abundance of respect for all the candidates for office. To paraphrase best selling writer and management guru Steven Covey, contested races sharpen the saw and build better statesmen (and women). Regardless of party affiliation, candidates that bring forward their ideas for our future to be vetted in the court of public opinion are deserved of our appreciation.
In the Virginia Senatorial race, candidates Glenda “Gail” Parker (Independent Green Party) and William Redpath (Libertarian Party) are receiving significantly less media attention than mainstream candidates Democrat Mark Warner and Republican Jim Gilmore. While no polls exist that project either Parker or Redpath garnering a significant portion of the vote on Tuesday, both are running lean campaigns on small budgets and connecting with voters. Parker’s advocacy for light rail may have found an audience in the transportation starved regions of the state while Redpath’s smaller government, flat tax positions may also hit home considering voters current economic conditions.
Ideas and plans to implment those ideas drive the engine of good government. The ability to build support for your concepts and rally the people to your cause drives politics. All candidates that have the willingness to stand up for their beliefs and defend their positions should be commended for raising the quality of the debate.
In every election, candidates matter.