I’m traveling and unable to divine the full gestalt of Tuesday’s vote, but from where I sit it sure appears that the electorate spoke with a much better vocabulary than the eighth-grade level usually assigned it. (I recognize I’m in the minority here but that’s the great thing about this blog, people can disagree. At least, that’s what I’m told. If the Cow of Political Correctness falls off a cliff onto my van, HA readers will know the reason why.)
Back to those astute voters. On Prop 1, they seemed to get that building more highways simply adds more traffic. They knew a Trojan Horse when they saw one — a blank check to the road lobby in the guise of a jolly green transit giant. My feeling is the region is ready for transit, yearns for transit, will vote for transit — but wants to proceed project by project, spur by spur, to keep the process on task and costs accountable. On R-67, who would’ve thunk? With all those ad dollars being spent on how the insurance industry is our friend! I wonder how many voters thought, each time they got hit with one of those commercials, “Gee, if only that money could go toward lowering my health insurance rates!” Or even — d’ya think? — providing coverage their policies say they’re providing.
David Della tried to smear Tim Burgess, but voters ultimately recognized Della as the feckless incumbent without a cause he really was. I’ve sat through entire Council committee meetings supposedly chaired by Della where he barely asked a question, and Jan Drago had to step in and run the thing. Our own little George Bush, an accidental officeholder with no political acumen or even an identifiable constituency, has been blessedly sent back to the private sector. Won’t we all be intrigued to see what it can do with him now.
As for poor Venus, can we please clarify why she lost so miserably? It was not because she was charged with drunk driving. It was how she handled the process and aftermath of being charged with drunk driving. When she said she was not impaired, what stuck in people’s minds was the word “impaired.” As further evidence of her ability to comport herself under pressure, she told reporters after results rolled in, “I am not talking to you tonight.”
Admittedly, my theory of an Enlightened Elector kind of falls apart with the school levy and Eyman measures. Maybe this crowd can see through hype and hypocrisy, but isn’t too good at percentages. Sherman should have won, and Jane Hague should not have been able to beat a garden gnome (maybe her secret was not saying the word “impaired”). Still, what I’m taking from this election is that not all campaigns are about big bucks. It used to be that dollars could deliver at the polls no matter what was right. This time around, people were talking, turning a lot of those paid political announcements into expensive white noise.