Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Local Politics again

Vermont has a long tradition with its Town Meeting Day on the first Tuesday in March. National media frequently picks up stories related to these town meetings, such as the current brouhaha about Brattleboro wanting to issue arrest warrants for Bush and Cheney, should they ever visit the town. We have nothing anywhere close to that controversial on our agenda, although we do have a re-vote on the future of our town office buildings.

The late date of our town meeting, which is also the date for our Presidential primary, and the size of the state tend to make Vermont irrelevant in the Presidential primary. Four years ago, Vermont gave Howard Dean his only primary win, well after he'd dropped from the race.

This year, it now appears that Vermont will matter to some extent, at least on the Democratic side. So, what does that have to do with local politics? I am probably best described as a socially liberal, fiscal conservative, with some Libertarian leanings. I think government should respect its citizens and their income, yet I think there are certain things governments should do. I'm registered as a Democrat. My opponent in our local election in 4 weeks is a Republican. However, our parties won't even be listed on the ballots - another quirk of VT law. But, my opponent is a well-known anti-tax conservative. One of the keys for me to win is turnout. My opponent has a core constituency that will show up to vote for him, but Democratic turnout will be important for me to win. With our Presidential primary suddenly mattering somewhat, I'm hopeful this will bring out more Democrats, and I'm also hopeful that they'll support me over my opponent.

I hope that conservatives will support me as well. I've spent my time in my current seat being very tight with town money, at least in my opinion. I've suggested a number of actions that have saved the town money and it's something I'll continue to do.

I guess I'm going to have to do some campaigning. It should be easy to find the time to do that, when I'm not running or lifting or working my day job or teaching skiing on the weekends or working on my consulting contract or attending government meetings.

Sleep is overrated, right?

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