Partisanship raises concerns in local politics
A problem is developing in local politics.
Partisanship probably has been around as long as the Rock County Labor
Coalition, which has been endorsing candidates for years.
But partisanship seemed to play a bigger role in Tuesday’s Rock County
elections than ever before. It has gone beyond mere endorsements of candidates. Now, it involves encouraging candidates to seek office and then backing them in an attempt to influence nonpartisan municipal, school and county boards.
So what? If they’re encouraging and supporting quality candidates,
what’s the problem? There are several.
First, local unions, led by United Auto Workers Local 95, provide an
experienced and savvy political machine. When a candidate gets union support, members might help erect signs, write letters, make phone calls or even offer campaign money. That puts Average Joe Candidate at a disadvantage.
Second, union-backed candidates who win could enter office beholden to
the union and its agenda, rather than constituents in general and the greater good of the community.
So. Here we are on the day after the election and The Gazette has found that there are partisans participating in non-partisan elections. (They weren't the only ones. Some idiot over at Fred's place thought it might be unconstitutional for teachers to vote on school referenda and wanted The New Supremes [Now with 17% more dunderheads] to look into it)
Why would I spit good soup over this, though?
It's because the editorial was over the masthead of The Gazette and the name of Publisher, Sidney Bliss. The very same Sidney Bliss who sits on the board of WMC and who, presumably, supports the actions of that body.
I'm sorry, Sid. (May I call you Sid?) You have no standing to decry the partisan actions of anyone until you take care of that line on your CV. I know that belonging to WMC is a good way to troll for advertisers and build those relationships that lead to good billing weeks. Fine.
But where do you get off saying (or paying someone to say) that anyone is unfairly using non-partisan politics to further an agenda when you sit on the board of an organization which has raised meddling to an art form.
Deal with that beam in your own eye, Sid. Then we can have a chat about the mote in Mike Sheridan's.