If you haven’t seen this, there is a website out there that really makes me smile. It’s called Ballot Ready (https://www.ballotready.org). You put your zip code in and you get the candidates in your district from presidential nominees down to Water Commissioner and judges. I almost always skip by a host of judges because I don’t know how they stand on stuff important to me.
Any way, I dropped in my address and zip code and voila the information I needed to make sound decisions became available.
I skipped right on past Trump. I glanced at Hillary but I nixed her months ago. I did look at Jill Stein (very much leaning in her direction). Hell, let me be honest. She’s got my vote.
What was really important to me was deciding about other independents,Democrats and Green Party candidates. I have a “close to my heart” list that includes things like single payer health care also known as universal health care or medicare for all.
We recently visited my in- laws in Canada, great couple. My sister in law has fought tooth and nail to become a truly dynamite woman. She remarried a few years ago to a wonderful man. He went for an annual physical a while back. It revealed a serious cardiac problem that required a quadruple by pass. In the United States this is a death sentence for some without really good insurance and deep, deep pockets or it means a lot of debt. For my brother in law it meant he got the surgery he needed and didn’t have to liquidate everything the family owned and still be in deep debt.
I also found that the candidate I thought of voting for, Tammy Duckworth was not for single payer. Nix Tammy. The Green Party candidate, Scott Summers is for single payer and he is a graduate of the Kellogg School of Business Management and a lawyer with a JD from Northern Illinois. Here was the double bonus. Here is is platform: http://summersforsenate.us/
His priorities include:
Economic and social policy: A Green New Deal — federal, state, and local programs that will put people back to work; $15 per hour minimum wage; promotion of community economics; single payer health care; equal educational opportunities via tax reform.
Monetary reform: a financial transactions tax; changes to the Federal Reserve system; quantitative easing for citizens (e.g., write downs of student and home mortgage loans); cap credit card interest rates.
Peace: reduce military spending; develop international military “go teams” for protection of civilians in conflict areas and as first responders to natural disasters.
Ecology: slow global warming; accelerate work on green infrastructure.
Susana Mendoza (Dem)is running against Republican Leslie Munger, Green Party, Tim Curtin and Libertarian, Claire Ball. There was nothing available about Mendoza’s stance. Alas only the Democratic and Republican candidates will be debating on October 25th. I’m glad Ballot Ready had stance information on the other two candidates. So far, Green is winning again in my tally.
State House fifth district was won by Julianna Stratton in a much discussed race against Ken Dunkin. She’s unproven and unopposed. I’m just always suspicious of someone financed by Michael Madigan but I also support t unions, when they play fair like not letting union members of color sit in the hall and never be assigned for work when the economy is in a downturn while white workers get jobs.
Metropolitan Water Reclamation has three Greens and three Democrats vying for the position. There was no information about the platforms for either of the three Greens. Barbara McGowan has held this position since 1998. Her platform was pretty clear but the how to do it might take some imagination.
Now Christopher Anthony running for a spot for the Water Reclamation Two Year Term may be worth some investigation. He has a pretty strong stance on the government activities in the water department like examining why the department hires so many out of state consultants. He also wants strenuous oversight of contracts.
I won’t belabor this by going through the 73 judicial candidates or the Cook County States Attorney. I think we heard a lot about Kim Foxx of late. There was no information regarding her Republican opponent on the site.
The bottom line is that voting is serious business. The presidential race is important but down ticket choices are equally important. It pays to take the time to understand ALL of your choices even when network and local media don’t provide you with enough information that doesn’t mean that there is no other info. Keep looking. Check social media for links. Be informed.
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