Friday, October 27

Alluring

That might seem like a strange word to apply to Grace Ross, who is running for governor on the Green-Rainbow Party ticket. To the consternation of many of my friends and neighbors, I often vote third party. Yes, I’ve heard all of the standard arguments: “Don’t throw your vote away,” “You’re giving votes to the opposition!” Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

Perhaps when I have more time, I’ll devote a post to the importance of third party politics, but for now, I’m simply including a link to a great article on Grace Ross in today’s Boston Globe. I’ve liked Grace Ross from the very start of the race. She is the candidate that most closely represents my values. She won’t win. But paradoxically, that’s exactly why I’m thinking of voting for her.

She has no chance of winning because the electorate has been trained to think that third-party/independent candidates aren’t viable. Perhaps if more people (like me) vote for them, they’ll begin to seem more viable and as a result will receive a larger share of the votes. By voting for Ross, I’m challenging the two-party system, which is as important a strategy to me as who becomes the next governor. It’s not all about the short term. Besides, if casting a vote is based solely on the likelihood of a candidate’s winning, then even a vote for Kerry Healey is likely to be a wasted vote, given Deval Patrick’s commanding lead in the polls.

Click here to read the article.

According to the article, “[d]uring Ross's visit to Massasoit [Community College], a custodian, a campus security officer, and a cafeteria worker sought her out to tell her they were thinking of voting for her.” Therein lies the key to success. Her message resonates with the working class, who rightly feel that they’ve been given the shaft by the political establishment.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Ross’s greatest asset is her message and its appeal to working class voters. Her biggest liability, as shown by recent opinion polls (above), is her lack of visibility (which is a direct result of her lack of funds). Compare the 46% of those polled who don’t know anything about Grace Ross to the less than 15% for each of the other candidates. However, the fact that 28% of those surveyed viewed her favorably, compared to the only slightly higher 34% for both Kerry Healey and Christy Mihos is quite telling.

The real challenge facing any third-party candidate is getting noticed and getting what is often a very appealing message out in front of the voters. All the more reason why Healey should shut her damn profiterole hole about a one-on-one debate with Patrick.

Although Ross has only about 2% of the vote this time around, if she and other populist candidates like her can continue to mobilize large numbers of the working class and those who feel disenfranchised and alienated by the political process, then the poll numbers might look very different down the road.

3 Comments:

Blogger Will said...

I have no idea how the two get along but I, too liked Grace Ross as a candidate very much and am wondering if there's any possibility Deval Patrick might find a place for her in his administration.

4:01 PM  
Anonymous Hooks said...

I met Grace downtown a few weeks ago and echoed the exact sentiments in your post. Her points about the income tax rollback are a case in point. While Deval (who I do like) talked around MA not being able to afford it, she went to the heart of the matter in discussing wage disparity and what the working folks get back from the 0.3% vs. what they'll give up (think Sean Healey).

If the polls were tighter I'd be pulling the lever for Deval, but considering how things look, Grace has my vote.

10:27 AM  
Blogger Marcelo Daniel said...

Me too...if Deval is safely ahead in the polls, the Greens get my vote.
And for those who are yet too uncomfotable voting for a non-two-party system person for governor, or who like Deval too much not to vote for him, may I suggest you at least vote for Jill Stein for Massachusetts Secretary of State. A friend of mine points out that Jill "is running straight up against a 12-year incumbent Democrat -- Bill Galvin -- who should be ashamed of what has happened to our democracy on his watch as Secretary. Only 25% of the elections in Massachusetts are contested elections, while incumbents have a 98% re-election rate. Galvin even had the gall to thumb his nose at his Democratic challenger, John Bonifaz (an amazing voting rights advocate), who raised countless important questions about Galvin's record. Galvin refused to debate -- somehow thinking that the people of the Commonwealth are not entitled to see the candidates before them on the ballot actually
debate the issues they will face in office. It is one thing for our elected officials to show such disdain for their constituents, but it is another thing entirely when that office holder is Secretary of State --overseeing our election system at a time when it is so broken."

It would be really something, and very appropriate, for the Secretary of State to be unaligned with either of the two major parties.
Jill's website is www.jillstein.org.

9:29 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 License.

AMAN YALA CLAIMS NO CREDIT FOR ANY IMAGES FEATURED ON THIS SITE, UNLESS EXPRESSLY STATED. ALL VISUAL CONTENT IS COPYRIGHT TO ITS RESPECTFUL OWNERS. IF YOU OWN RIGHTS TO ANY OF THE IMAGES AND DO NOT WISH THEM TO APPEAR ON THIS SITE, PLEASE CONTACT ME VIA E-MAIL, AND THEY WILL BE PROMPTLY REMOVED.