Latest in a series of posts on candidates for election
Whew! May 18. This is the day! Long run!
And this, for all intents and purposes, is Gadfly’s swan song. (Love the mixed metaphor!)
Gadfly shuts down tomorrow Wednesday, May 19, at noon.
He may have a few more posts just cleaning off the desk.
But this is it.
One of his missions has been to help you make the most informed vote you can.
No voting on sound bites, yard signs, pretty mailers, ethnic affinity, friendship, lengths of resumes, who you went to high school with, who endorsed you, and the etceteras.
Modestly, he says, he’s kind of knocked himself out to provide info on everybody, without endorsement or slant (as much as one can do in this fallen world and in spite of those of you who — on all sides — think they have smelled out his preferences).
This weekend as example.
A couple of dozen posts over Saturday and Sunday providing a basis to compare candidates on all kinds of dimensions.
Probably blew up your phones.
Go for it. For those of you who haven’t voted yet, make your choices.
Gadfly tips his hat to all of you candidates for running. It ain’t easy putting yourself out there. He envies you your youth. for doing what he can’t. He admires you and thanks you for making us think about what we need to think about. And giving us choice.
We have great candidates. Gadfly sees good in everybody.
Look at those smiling faces. Even Rachel under the mask as she struggles with a phone cord bent on abducting her stage right.
Except for one thing.
And he can’t sign off and buzz off without saying something.
And this is NOT to be taken as an endorsement of one candidate over another.
It is a critical comment about one aspect of one campaign.
A quite unfortunate aspect.
The Reynolds campaign Trump mailer.
It is remarkable that one of the Reynolds endorsers, Lehigh Valley for All, termed it negative campaigning and suggested his opponent was due an apology. As far as Gadfly is aware, candidate Reynolds and the Reynolds campaign have not even publicly acknowledged that judgment by a grass roots political organization that candidate Reynolds himself has praised for doing important work (LV4All has not responded to a request for information about a Reynolds response to them) much less offered an apology. In fact, Gadfly continues to see candidate Reynolds followers in social media basing their support for him on the content thrust of that mailer rather than other issues with his opponent with which they might disagree despite the judgment of an apparently respected third party.
The candidate Reynolds defense against the charge of negative campaigning on the Gadfly Forum is artfully crafted so as not to directly, regretfully admit the mailer was his mistake nor to recognize the irreparable damage the mailer may have done. At root, the candidate Reynolds defense is that he done me wrong, so I have license to do him wrong. An eye for an eye. So Old Testament. Only in politics can such a view be considered a respectable ethical standard.
Gadfly says again that his words here are NOT to be taken as an endorsement of one candidate over another. Candidate Reynolds is a powerful figure with a substantial record of accomplishment. Even LV4All couldn’t bring itself to de-endorse him. Gadfly might well be voting for him.
What Gadfly hopes here is that those of you who haven’t voted yet (it will be interesting to learn if the prior mail-in preference stayed strong) will, if you favor candidate Reynolds, do so on a basis other than the “argument” in the Trump mailer, whose basis is a political canard.
Reynolds critics tell stories of him popping off in the past. The Trump mailer has. for Gadfly, the feel of a moment of lost control, a moment of extreme pique.
Gadfly might not have written this part of this post except for this naked one-line appraisal a well meaning Reynolds supporter contributed at 1:50 Monday afternoon:
“Willie has changed a lot as a public official – and for the better – since 2013.”
There’s tacit recognition of at least some questionable behavior in the past.
Gadfly has tried, but he is not able to completely square that progressive view with the Trump mailer.
The Trump mailer might not hurt candidate Reynolds in this election, but Gadfly, who knows as much about politics as you would expect from an English teacher, feels it might haunt him in the future.