Those of us who see this have a choice whether to go to the polls – and call our circle of influence to the polls – to show what we really think, what we really want and need, or to do nothing.
But doing nothing, calling for nothing, is surrendering the field – not to Patrick and the Democratic establishment, who are toast anyway, but to the Tea Party, the ones offering false answers to a desperate electorate!
Grace Ross should have been our candidate. Unlike other candidates, she is not promising to fix things for us. Grace is offering to lead us in the fight of our lives. And the people are ready for a fight! Their eyes light up when I say this!
The May 12 Rasmussen Poll had Grace at 27% in a match-up with Baker and Cahill, with 49% still not knowing enough about her to express an opinion. That’s a stubborn fact – which the newspapers roundly ignored – but it happened! If you doubt it, go to the Rasmussen site and look it up! But the activists – labor, Democratic, neighborhood and community, issue group and affinity group – didn’t get the mood of the people and didn’t turn out to get the signatures to put her on the ballot, and now here we are. Can we sit back quietly and watch the disaster unfold now? Or do we use our vote to at least send a real message?
The three serious candidates on the ballot vie with each other over who can do the best job of slashing government services and employment while giving away our taxes to the big corporations and calling that “job creation”. Patrick is running for reelection on a platform of economic recovery, a “jobless recovery” that our neighbors aren’t seeing, but says nothing about the ten thousand people a week in Massachusetts alone exhausting their unemployment benefits.
If the three candidates can see the storm clouds of the next downward lurch of the economy gathering, they’re not admitting it. Food pantries increasingly stand bare, and actual hunger stalks the state. We keep meeting people who two, three years ago were earning a good living, who are alone now with their shame and poverty and starting to starve!
All three candidates continue to ignore the foreclosure and homelessness crisis. Foreclosures continue to rise, with 40% of homeowners “under water” and a huge new wave of rate-resets just ahead. They’re ignoring the increasing number who can’t access the life-saving health care they need because of health care rationing or inadequate insurance.
And they all agree on blaming the public sector workers, the teachers, police and firemen as the problem, breaking contracts and vying for who can force wage and benefit cuts down to the “new normal”, rallying public resentment of union workers who are stubbornly refusing to join the rest of us in poverty and desperation!
So some of us feel compelled once again to call for a write-in for Grace Ross.
Grace is the only real statesman on the statewide political stage, the only candidate with a real strategy for the way forward, the only one with the guts to take on the corporations and their apologists, the only candidate who gets it about the distress the people are in, because she has lived among us, worked for us and with us, and for a generation her life has been organizing and leading us in dozens of battles on most of the major issues that confront us.
The Governor’s line on the Democratic ballot offers the choice “Deval Patrick” or “Other”. I’m calling on Democrats and “independents” to pull a Democratic ballot, fill in the bubble for “Other” and write in “Grace Ross, Worcester MA”. I’m asking people to call in to radio shows and post to newspaper and other blogs on Monday to call for a write-in vote for Grace, and then remind their friends on Tuesday.
Of course this won’t work. It can’t work. Things don’t work like this! But who knows? These are not normal times, and the mood of the people is unlike anything I’ve ever seen. Not many will be bothering to show up to vote for Deval on Tuesday, and most of those I’ve talked to on the street are done with him and wide open to this idea. They might surprise us and turn out. We might just catch Patrick by surprise and swamp his boat!
And then the real fight – and the real fun – begins!
Chris Horton, 508-963-1399
BTW, neither Grace Ross nor the Grace Ross Committee authorized this message.