Friday letters: Keep moving forward, mad respect, Electoral College, and thank you election officials
Beginning of a movement to change Garfield County
After leading for most of Election Day evening, the final vote count said I came in second in the Garfield County commissioner race. Though I may concede that I came up short of our goal, I am not going to concede that we have lost. We won on so many levels that I will consider my campaign a success.
Garfield County voters voted overwhelmingly for Democrats at the top of the ballot. Both Beatriz Soto and I garnered 14,000 voters out of approximately 30,500 total — we came so very close to winning. With these tight election results, it would be folly for the county commissioners to believe they have a referendum to continue their conservative and ineffective policies.
Voters want protections for clean air and water. They want inclusivity in their county administration and programs. I believe voters also want term limits; they want solutions to the COVID spread; they don’t want the county to waste millions defending the oil and gas industry and instead, spend funds to diversify our economy. Most importantly, together we have to fight racism here in the county.
Of the people who know me best, they recognize I won’t disappear from county politics. In fact, I feel more energized than ever now that I received such optimistic support across Garfield County.
I want to thank the people of Garfield County, all my supporters, our volunteers, contributors, friends, Beatriz Soto and Garfield County Democratic board members for all the efforts made to get me elected. We fell short of that goal, but you can lose a battle yet win the war.
This is the beginning of a movement to change Garfield County, not an end. Let’s look forward to 2022 when we’ll have another chance to bring the constructive change the residents deserve. Like the campaign theme I ran on says, “Let’s keep moving forward!”
Democratic Candidate for
Garfield County Commissioner, Dist. 3
Candidates stood up against great odds and made a difference
I want to thank Diane Mitsch Bush, Karl Hanlon, Colin Wilhelm, Beatriz Soto and Leslie Robinson for running superb campaigns in western rural Colorado. Citizens saw some of the best candidates and best run campaigns ever in red districts. They may not have prevailed, but it’s not always about winning. It’s about leaning in and changing the narrative to focus on progressive issues that benefit all the citizens and environment.
Most people out of urban areas, liberal ski towns and coastal cities have no idea how hard it is to run in a red district. I won a county commissioner race in a red county 20 years ago and Eagle County is now blue. I ran on green new deal and medicare for all in 2016. Start with social and climate justice and we all are better off.
These folks stood up against great odds and made a difference. This is a story most never cover in politics. It is real down-home, grass-roots politics where getting to know people in a huge geographic region matters.
Mad respect you guys.
Electoral College was flawed compromise
Regardless of the outcome of the 2020 presidential election, twice in 20 years is too often for the Electoral College to have the chance to negate the outcome of the popular vote. Since its inception the Electoral College has been a moral problem. Its primary purpose was to dilute the election preferences of voters in Northern states where, according to James Madison, “The right to suffrage was more diffusive.” He was referring to the fact that while the total populations in the North and South were about the same, black people could vote in the North, while only white people could vote in the South. More than 90% of America’s 5 million slaves lived in five Southern states, where the economic system based on slavery made whites the powerful minority.
The Electoral College enshrined in Article 2 of the Constitution was the flawed compromise to address the discrepancy artificially created by the South’s voting eligibility laws, and get them to sign on to membership in the United States of America. Today this compromise looks like the grand daddy of voter suppression measures. After the Civil War, the United States ratified the 14th and 15th Amendments to extend voting rights to all its legal residents regardless of their previous forced servitude, race, creed or color. The Electoral College is perhaps the last vestige of the slavery mindset of our framers. Its abolition would mean that Black votes matter too, wherever they are cast.
Thank Alberico, election judges for diligent work
We should all thank Jean Alberico, Garfield County Clerk, for her diligent work on the November election during this difficult time. Let’s thank her staff and election judges for their time as well. This was not an easy job at this time. Thank goodness Colorado has a great mail-in ballot system.
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