…no matter what, what, what.
I have been an active participant in the political process for a very long time. I have watched great candidates and not-so great candidates win and lose. And I have watched folks who have the potential to be a good candidate lose because they cannot keep their mouths shut or their fingers off their keyboard.
The latter happens to be the case in the Georgia CD-6.
In full disclosure, like most in this little corner of the world, I happen to know several candidates on the Republican ticket. Also, I don’t live in the 6th Congressional District. I live in the 3rd. However, no matter where you live, if you are a voter and invested in the future of our state and country, you should be disappointed and embarrassed by the behavior of some of the candidates and campaign staff on the trail right now.
The continued trend in local, state, and national GOP politics is to kill the other candidates. And the methods rarely have anything to do with policy. We use personal jabs, snarky social media posts and tweets, and “alternative facts” to destroy people WHO ARE ON OUR TEAM. We are in PRIMARY season in the middle of a special election. Right now, the only people actually competing for the same job are those who basically share the same values. And yet, we see candidates going after each other on a personal level rather than campaigning for support based on qualifications for the office.
And if we want to talk about real qualifications, let’s be clear, honesty and ethics is at the top. At this point, there are few who care who you supported in the presidential election leading up to the General Election (unless you are a Republican and it was Hilary). What people do care about is whether you flip-flop based on what is the most convenient position to hold in the moment. And if “all” you’ve done **insert eye roll here** is serve on city council, which is IMPORTANT and HARD WORK, but “only a step above the PTA”, then there are others who not only have held higher office and know much more about the issues at hand, but also value the jobs needed to keep our communities running.
Negative campaigning doesn’t get you very far. Engaging in personal attacks with a candidate’s spouse gets you even less. People don’t vote for someone who comes across as thinking that they are better than everyone else. They vote for likable candidates. They vote for people they can relate to on a personal level. They vote for people who appear calm in battle. They vote for those who focus on the issues and rise above the pettiness of politics as usual.
But this is not really how the GOP plays ball. It’s how the Democrats play. And our strategy is the losing strategy. They unite. And when someone beats them, they unite and work hard to get their team member elected. Granted, it doesn’t always work. But where they win EVERY SINGLE TIME is in the expansion of their base. In their ability rally their troops. They win in a united front.
We’re better than this. Candidates, you are better than this. We have highly qualified men and women running to represent their districts. But low blows and “politics as usual” doesn’t represent me or the voters I know in the 6th. The type of campaigning happening right now isn’t growing our base. It isn’t improving our game. It isn’t inviting others to join us. It’s ugly, dirty, and embarrassing.
Your constituents deserve better. Do better.