Of primary importance

Here in Kansas (and in many other states), it’s Primary Day.

Please take the 15 minutes you would normally spend reading my blog and

Take somebody with you, and, if you have a few extra minutes, make some calls to turn out the vote, too.

Primaries matter.

A lot.

November is, in Kansas and much of the nation, all about August.

Today, in particular.

6 responses to “Of primary importance

  1. Thanks for this reminder Melinda. How important is this race? One example: with redistricting in Kansas, and the retirement of our former state senator (a moderate Republican) the republican senate race in this new district is between a 1 term moderate Republican senator and a 1 term state representative with freely acknowledge “Tea Party sympathies.”

    The moderate (Senator Tim Owens) has been targeted for defeat by Brownback and the extreme conservatives. That targeting has included over $100,000 spent by extremists, almost all of it in negative, decietful, and distorted advertising. (Owens who entered state politics 9 years ago at the age of 56 has been labled a “career politician.” That is the least of the offensive and untrue accusations heaped upon him.) This is occuring in many senate races across the state.

    When I (and others) posted civil but challenging questions and commentary on reprentative Jim Dennings facebook page, he DELETED those posts. Please understand, he IS my current representative: refusing to even acknowledge questions about his voting record. And then configured his facebook to refuse comments from anyone who dares to disagree with him.

    There are important issues at stake here in Kansas. Do you believe that students and faculty should be freely allowed to carry firearms into their classrooms? Jim Denning does. Do you believe that women should be denied access to contraception and reproductive health care? Jim Denning does. Do you believe that citizens who disagree with their representatives should be ignored and denied a venue for their dissenting voices? Jim Denning does. Do you believe that locally owned agencies should be forced to shut down as social and health care management services are “privatized” to out-of-state businesses with financial ties to political factions? Jim Denning does. Do you know the opposite of “moderation?” Jim Denning does. And it’s called extremeism. And THAT is what we’re up against.
    (In the local “house of representatives” race, the self identified “conservative candidate” rented an apartment and moved into the the district only two days before the filing deadline. Of course thats exactly what our current Congressman did for his first -and successful- run for the state house of representatives.) Gotta go vote now.

  2. Civil disobedience and the 2012 vote. I just voted. But first I removed every photo ID from my billbold. I replace those items with my 1A Selective Service (draft) Card from 1971. My very first voter registration card from this state in 1972. (yes I have kept such items) My current voter registration card. My business card. Five credit cards. My health and car insurance cards. My AARP card. My grocery store and pharmacy discount cards. My NASW & CSWE membership cards. My membership card from the Liberty Memorial / National WWI Museum Society. And a reciept for my property taxes that I’d previously forgotten to file away. I also wore one of the t-shirts that our students made up this past years that demands, “PAPERS PLEASE!” in six foriegn languages (German, Arabic, Hebrew, French, Spanish, & Crole) followed by the challenge, “We don’t need no stinkin’ papers!” . . . . . . . . The poll judges were very pleasant and sympathetic. (As was I.) And twenty minutes later I walked out having cast a provisional “paper ballot.”

  3. Melinda, Yesterday I took the day off of work to volunteer for my party. First I spent a couple of hours doing “get out the vote” calls, encouraing people from my party to get to the polls.

    Then I spent 4 hours as a poll watcher for my party, where I sat near the poll judges and tallied the number of voters who came in and crossed off names from our calling list who came in.

    Then I went to vote and learned that in three pages of voting, there was only one category in which I had a choice of candidates. For a few categories, there was one candidate only, and for all the rest, the options were BLANK.

    How bad is it, that when we KNOW a democrat is rarely elected – nobody even tries anymore. Made me sad.

    Meanwhile, I was proud to give my vacation day to the process. I’ve not done that before, and I’m thinking it is something I can do on future election days.

    • Good for you, Audra! Not that I’m surprised. I share your disappointment, and it’s part of what makes me so concerned about November, and about the future. With turnout often so low in primaries, it’s just inexcusable for the primary to be, in so many cases, THE election, but we have several examples of where that will, indeed, be the case. That means that we need to recruit more good candidates, something that those of us in the nonprofit sector are prohibited from doing, which, given the money that poured into this primary, is a serious imbalance. Thank you for sharing your experience. I miss you and look forward to seeing you soon.

  4. Audra Kenneson

    We just had a conversation today at work – looking statistically – approximately 20% of our community elected the officials who will be “representing” us on the state level. It’s wrong. We all should be able to vote on that.

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