Show your appreciation with your vote

Kenai Peninsula voters will notice a couple of uncontested races on their November 6 ballot. There is no Democrat or Independent running for the Senate District O seat (Kenai south to Homer of the House District 29 seat (Kenai-Soldotna-Kasilof area). The two Republicans won their primaries and are now unopposed on the ballot. They have stated their support for their party platform which does not trust women to make their own reproductive decisions. The Senate candidate speaks against the Senate Bipartisan Coalition which held the line on the Republican governor’s massive oil tax giveaway; the incumbent House member voted for the giveaway last session.

So what are we to do with our precious votes if we are pro-choice and/or pro-coalition? Where are the moderates? We need to find and support capable, hard-working and ethical people who share our concerns. Sadly, only 10 percent of women and 20 percent of men ever consider a run for public office. Yet we all know people who have lived a life of selfless volunteer service to their community. Or a smart young person who has just stepped onto the same compassionate path. So let’s turn this dilemma into an opportunity. Think of a person you wish were running. Write-in their name on that ballot, then tell them you did so and tell them why. Call it an appreciation vote, an encouragement vote. Call it a first step in finding and supporting candidates who care about the health and education of our children, the equal personhood of women, fiscal stability and good jobs in an unpolluted environment. Next election, we may have some real choices!

Of course you have the choice to not vote in those races or to write in your favorite cartoon character (Big Bird may be looking for work, but I can’t help thinking that a stronger and more positive statement could be made by writing in the name of a person who exemplifies what you would like to see in leadership).

Finally, I would like to thank Liz Diament and Ron Devon for stepping forward to offer us choices in the other peninsula races.

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