Local elections should be decided locally

By Scott Tibbs, February 22, 2019

A Democrat candidate for countywide office in 2016 was recently arrested and charged with possession of child pornography. He did not win the primary, but if he had won he almost certainly would have won the general election. This is someone who already had a criminal record, but most of the 30,000 people who voted for the Democratic nominee in 2016 would have voted for him had he been the nominee. Imagine the mess we would be in now had he won. It is not as if the Democrats are strangers to electing corrupt officials: A former Democrat county auditor was criminally charged for stealing from the county by using her credit card for personal expenses.

Republicans have only one candidate for eleven seats in the May primary, in City Council District II. No Republican filed for any of the other eight seats on the city council and no Republican filed for mayor or city clerk. Bloomington is effectively a one-party city, and it is easy to see why. Since the Iraq War, there is so much partisan hatred that anyone with an (R) next to his name is anathema. That is why when a Republican filed for city council the very first comment on Herald-Times Online was demanding that he denounce various Republican officials.

Let's be real here. Whatever you think of Donald Trump or any other Republican at the national or state level, that has nothing at all to do with city government. We need the candidate with the best qualifications and the best plan to maintain our streets, get the snow plowed, deal with crime through effective policing, manage trash pickup, push for transparency in government, protect basic civil rights, and and engage with planning for growth while protecting private property rights.

Local government elections are too important to vote based on national political issues. Local government affects your life on a daily basis, from trash pickup to police and fire protection, maintenance of city streets and plowing snow. You interact with city government every single day just by driving on city streets. Furthermore, local elections is where your vote has the most impact. Do not throw away your vote by basing it on your hatred for Donald Trump. Examine the candidates and the issues, and vote accordingly. If you can honestly vote for the Democrats after doing that, so be it. But you owe it to yourself and your neighbors to vote for local races on local issues.

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