First – you must go vote on Tuesday! And if you are unsure/want to register a protest – leave the ballot blank. Blanking your ballot sends a clear message to those who take your vote for granted; you are present and paying attention, AND they have to do more to earn your vote in the future. People who run pay attention to blank ballots. AND by voting you stay on the radar of politicians as an active voter.
Second – thank you to so many they have told me they wish I was running. This election was a short time period, requiring lots of campaign money AND I am still focused on fighting for regular people INSIDE Massachusetts. People like me who are not multi-millionaires need even small contributions to be able to run…
Third – I am voting for Coakley – and I am asking you to join me…
I share the anger of many at the inaction and ineffectiveness of our government when our lives, our children’s lives and our very neighborhoods are struggling if not falling down around us. It is unacceptable and those in government MUST be forced to act. And whatever happens Tuesday we must get active forcing them to act in the interests of all of us.
I know Coakley not as a Democrat, but as probably the most pro-active fighter against the big bankers and lenders – the forces that have brought not just our neighborhoods and state into this deep economic downturn – but our world economy. She filed early against these predatory lenders and she has won cases against them. She filed aggressive legislation to force them to make the best financial choice for each property they mortgaged – no more avoiding action and the economic impact on all of us of their financial decisions.
Coakley has also been a consistent and effective advocate against employers who don’t pay wages people already earned.
At a time when corporate greed and excess are the worst enemy of ALL of us, Coakley’s record of standing against illegal behavior of major corporations is critical.
Fourth – Scott Brown represents the worst of rightwing excess – I have a number of Republican friends in the statehouse whose integrity and commitment to local control and small businesses and regular people I deeply respect – they actively oppose huge government subsidies to big corporations and have stood with people on basic human rights.
Scott Brown does not stand in this tradition. In the thousands of hours I have spent over the last more than 2 decades working on legislation and supporting people to talk to their legislators, I have never found a reason to cross the threshold to his office.
He supports cutting jobs, he opposes taxing the wealthiest interests while the rest of us pay and he opposes reining in the massive financial interests that have pillaged our economy.
He has filed to cut the most basic of medical necessities, consistently opposed basic rights to live without discrimination on the basis of… well, anything, you name it.
And what I find perhaps most unforgivable, he has opened the flood gates and welcomed into our state the kind of huge, hate-driven political monied interests which if given free-rein would work to unseat even the best Republicans let alone anyone else who cares for the greater well-being of the regular people of this state.
Please make sure you are counted by voting Tuesday.
Please consider voting for Coakley – and if you can’t, please protest by blanking your ballot.
PS: with many others I agree that the national healthcare reform is deeply flawed and should be reworked from scratch. It is needlessly expensive and will not provide realistic accessible care to many going without now – and many go without now who nominally are covered but in reality cannot use what they supposedly have.
Healthcare Reform is going to pass Congress – whether Coakley is elected or not. The only issue is how much it gives away to mega-insurance and drug companies. Brown will be on the side of the mega-corporate interests.
Also, Coakley has been a strong advocate for equal rights for women and GLBT folks; Scott Brown has been downright aggressive against equal rights – and where he has weakly supported women, don’t think that the money he is beholden to now will allow him to continue that.
Real issues have been raised about Coakley’s support for punitive law-enforcement policies that are expensive and have been proven-ineffective such as increasing minimum sentencing. I agree she is imperfect, but who isn’t?
That’s why the MOST critical lesson is that we have to stop treating our government as a spectator sport: don’t like what someone in office is doing? Call them, visit them, find them at public events, don’t give up till they listen – vote Tuesday BUT voting alone is not enough!
Oh, puh-leeze. This is the same kind of brilliant thinking that people voting for Nader in 200 engaged in — and look how well that turned out. If you’re a supporter of Ms. Ross and you want to make sure that any of the things that you believe in will have any chance at all? You need to hold your nose and vote for Coakley.
p>Yes, Coakley has done some things that are unfortunate, and some things that, for me as a civil libertarian, are beyond unfortunate. But there are hundreds of issues to think about — environment, education, foreign policy, and Wall Street regulation to name a few — where we already KNOW where Brown will vote and where Coakley will vote.
p>You want to protest by blanking a ballot? Some other time. In two years, you can try to find a candidate to run to her left in the primary — or blank a ballot then — and see where that goes.
Blanking the ballot most certainly is not a vote for Brown.
p>Mathematically, it isn’t (if voting for Coakley is +1 and Brown -1, blanking is 0).
p>Philosophically, candidates must earn our votes. Even if Coakley hasn’t earned a voter’s vote, that voter still has a civic obligation to vote, and a blank ballot meets that civic obligation.
p>In terms of protest, if expected blowouts are the only time it’s appropriate to vote for someone other than the D/R, then the protests are worthless because one candidate simply doesn’t need those protest votes to win. The only time the so-called protest votes are effective is specifically in situations like these, where the candidates must hustle for every vote if they are to win.
p>I’m voting for Coakley. She’s earned my vote, and I think she’ll do a good job in the Senate. I’m also cognizant of my desire for 60 Dem senators because the GOP obstructs everything. But look — falsely claiming that a blank vote is a vote for Brown is not only dishonest, it also creates disaffected voters… voters who might start voting for future Dem (and donating to, and working for) candidates but who could also be persuaded to always cast a “protest” vote — which surely isn’t going to be helpful the next time we’ve got a close election either.
…. just stay home, so we’ll know exactly who didn’t care enough to take a stand.
p> Vote Martha!
I can’t support you anymore.
staying home on Tuesday would be disastrous to our Commonwealth. Your advice reminds me of when Ralph Nader suggested that a vote for Gore or a vote for Bush didn’t matter, since there wasn’t “a dimes worth of difference between them.”
p>Nader cost us that election, and look at the disastrous results. Whatever your problem with Coakley (and really, who IS the perfect candidate?), she would be 100 times the senator Brown would be. And we would effectively have NO voice in government if he were elected, since I presume he and Kerry would vote differently on nearly every issue, thereby cancelling each other out.
p>So if you preferred Capuano, or one of her other primary opponents, or perhaps somebody who didn’t even run, just suck it up and vote for Martha. I have a feeling some would rather see her lose, thinking they can reclaim the seat for a “better” candidate in 2012 — well that may not be as easy as it seems. Look at how many horrific incumbents there are around the country, and yet their consituents keep re-electing them.
p>I will be going to the polls on Tuesday to vote for Martha Coakley, and I hope many of you will be joining me.