Monday, August 03, 2009

Big dead line and anniversary

Today is the day that people from outside of the D and R political parties must complete the delivery of nomination papers to get onto the November ballot. So, the final signatures and sheets from Kevin Acklin and Dok Harris are due -- signed, sealed and delivered.

There are always a few folks we come to meet on this day. Is there going to be a candidate from the Socialist Party? Remember Frank?

Tomorrow starts the period where political operatives begin to search in earnest for the dead people who have been known to sign those papers. Challenges may or may not appear for the mayor's opponents. In general, Luke's camp is going to be happy to have two opponents so knocking one or the other out of the race would be a dangerous move. To focus the ABY (anyone but Luke) vote in one category is a tiny fear.

The real fear of politicians is not something that ever appears on the ballots in Pennsylvania and one that should be part of every election: NOTA (None of the above). All elections should have a choice called, 'none of the above.' That way the ones who are unhappy with the state of affairs in that specific race could raise their outrage without lifting a brick, fist or worse.

And, frankly, it is too much work to run for office yourself to make a point. Rather, the point of 'none of the above' should be handy for us all to make on election days.

Two years ago, an ex Division I football player, a former service man who had jumped out of airplanes, Pitt student, and Libertarian, Tony Oliva, filed papers to appear on the ballot for mayor. He had worked throughout the summer to get a bulk of the signatures.

That year, 2007, I ran for public office too -- for both city council and city controller.

Mark DeSantis got onto the ballot in 2007 with a write in campaign among Rs in the primary. In 2009, Luke Ravenstahl won the R primary, blocking any possible charge from another via that avenue.

In 2008, we were packing to head to Beijing, China, to enjoy the Olympics. It was a quiet election cycle for me as Obama was pounding on McCain and my guy was Ron Paul, R from Texas. He was out by then, just holding a counter convention in Minnesota, larger than what the GOP was able to stage.

In 2006, I filed papers to run for State Senate, district 42 against Wayne Fontana. Before the judge in Harrisburg, on the day before I went to Canada to coach a swim camp, I put into the public record the fact that my challenge of campaign nomination papers came from the office of my state senator. Political work had been done in the public office to eliminate any and all opponents from the ballot. The judge found it interesting that the fax header of papers delivered to me had both law office stationary and the faxing fingerprints of PA Senate District 42's Harrisburg name and number clearly at the top of the pages of one of the summons that called for me to appear in court.

Later, we'd see lots of folks in Harrisburg get arrested for miss-use of staffers. Bonus-gate.

At the same time, PA's Green Party candidate for Governor was racking up legal bills and court charges so he could appear on the ballot. He was hit with charges from the judges / courts for hundreds of thousands of dollars. And, the case went to the top court of Pennsylvania as well.

I knew when to fold em, as the country and western song lyrics go.

In 2009, something might happen soon. But not with me in terms of election day participation. For me, I looking to make some swimmers and water polo player and open a new front in the battle against couch potatoes and obesity.


deegazette said...

Great post and timely for me since earlier today when I dropped in to the site I was forlorn over seeing how you are devoted to water polo to the exclusion of politics at times.

Mark Rauterkus said...

Jeepers. I didn't even spell dead line properly.

Fixed now.

Worry not -- dear deegazette. I'm not dead yet.

I think I'll go to city council and speak tomorrow -- but about water polo. =:0

To everything, there is a season, Turn, Turn, Turn --- so the folk song goes.