Thursday, October 26, 2006

Jack Palance said it best: "Believe it... or not." The Marilyn Goldwater misinformation campaign continues. The facts: Ms. Goldwater missed 18 days of the 2006 session. Contrary to her assertion in the Potomac Almanac, she did miss votes. Including a critical vote on the ICC. Whether you are a Republican, Democrat, or Independent, certainly you would agree that the ICC is a major issue. She has been absent on the campaign trail. I've been at the events; she wasn't there. This is not a Republican issue. Many Democrats supported Reggie Oldak in the primary. The Washington Post endorsed Ms. Oldak over Ms. Goldwater. Ms. Goldwater was criticized by several respected Democrats, including former District 17 Delegate Cheryl Kagan. Ms. Kagan said in August: "We're troubled by her attendance record."

The Gazette lost credibility by endorsing Ms. Goldwater for reelection. They understated her legislative and campaign absences. They said she has assured voters that she won't be absent during the next session. How did she assure voters when she never appears in public? Why does the Gazette accept her word as fact, when those of us who have actively campaigned know that she has been missing all year? That says a lot about the editorial standards of the Gazette. If a politician is accused of a crime, will the Gazette accept his or her word as well? Without corroborating evidence, or interviewing other sources?

The Gazette's endorsement of Ms. Goldwater has stained its journalistic and civic credentials, and is an insult to our community's intelligence. The community should also know that the Gazette did not interview any of Ms. Goldwater's Republican challengers for possible endorsement. They don't know the candidates or what they stand for. When you don't know the candidates in the race, you can't make an authoritative, credible endorsement. Their endorsements are based on some other arbitrary criteria. Consider that after Knapp's Clarksburg, and yet another recent Knapp scandal just weeks ago, they endorsed Mike Knapp over Scott in District 2. They did not interview Scott for possible endorsement either. Much like my opponents, Mr. Knapp's votes relate directly to his financial contributors. It boggles the mind. Now it is revealed that Mr. Knapp, and others, pay the teachers union to get on the apple ballot. Imagine, politicians buying an endorsement and then claiming it represents teachers. Outrageous. What an insult to hard working, underpaid teachers in our county.

This all shows why you, the voter, should take time to read the voters guides and websites to make your own decisions. So many "endorsements" are a sham and a farce, and represent the special interests that work behind the scenes. Whatever your choice, please do vote on November 7. This is an historic election that will change our future.

Keep that copy of the editorial page from this week's Gazette. If Marilyn Goldwater is reelected and we end up with only 2 of our 3 votes until 2010, the Gazette will be a national laughingstock, like our transportation system. And Jack Palance wants a copy too. It will be on display in the Ripley's Believe It or Not! museum.

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