One reason why I like to bring my political decisions to this blog is that frankly a lot of people ask me my opinion in real life, so I figure some of you might be curious as well. I also like to solicit thoughts from my readers as well. Today is Friday, only four more days until election day. According to Tom Skilling, Tuesday looks to be sunny and not too cold. This is GREAT for turn out. But even if I can skip my way to my polling station, I still don't know who to vote for in the Democratic primary for the U.S. Senate. According to a Chicago Tribune poll, it looks like I'm not the only undecided! So let's dive in:
Robert Marshall: Opposes gun control and is frankly not a known entity. While I do root for the lil guy, I think Marshall is too little in this big race.
Jacob Meister: I think he was the first candidate to follow me on Twitter, so he gets points for that. Really, if a candidate is smart enough to use social media in the campaign, hopefully that means she/he will be smart enough to continue to use it to communicate to their constituents. I also like what he has to say on issues, especially prison reform. It's a start. I also like how feisty he was in the ABC 7 debate. Alas, he also lacks in name recognition and is woefully down in the polls.Again, I like my underdogs, but only so far.
Alexi Giannoulias: Obama's basketball buddy. I didn't support his Treasurer run and I won't vote for him in this race either. Not only do I get a bad feeling about him, but recent new issues with his family's bank are going to be a huge issue in a general election, especially up against Rep. Mark Kirk. I know the polls say one thing right now, but November is a long way off. The downside to an early primary is that leaves a LONG time for the candidates to beat each other up.
And here is where this feminist is up the river and on a fence. As I said in my Cook County post last week, it's hard to find the perfect feminist candidate. Mostly because there is no such thing as a perfect feminist. I've moved beyond supporting a woman candidate just because we may share some plumbing, but I also still prefer to vote for women because our representation is just so lacking in most venues. So I start with the woman candidate and tally up her pluses and minuses.
Cheryle Jackson: Good on most of the issues except marriage equality. As a NOW member and former NOW board member, I know how important it is to elect someone who wants full marriage for same sex couples and not civil unions.
She also put herself thru college. Since I did that myself, I always give candidates props for that fact. Hopefully that means they remember that struggle when crafting policy that impacts higher education and young workers.
Her big bad seems to be that she worked for Blagojevich, in fact she was his spokesperson. The question is how much did she know? I don't know if we can know that answer. The next question is can we trust her?
David Hoffman: He's good on the issues and supports marriage equality. He made some mistakes early on in the campaign that soured me, but as the Chicago Tribune says in reaction to a Giannoulias ad, Hoffman apologized.
On Afghanistan, Jackson would call for troops to come home immediately, but Hoffman says it's not realistic. And honestly I struggle with that issue every day. I feel like Jackson, but think like Hoffman. I want to support bringing the troops home now.
So I think you can see why I'm struggling with my decision. I think that both candidates would make excellent senators.
I am thinking about who would be able to stand up to Mark Kirk. He's going to be formidable. While the Tea Baggers won't like him, they will love handing President Obama a loss in his home state. What will be a bigger liability? Having your family bank bailed out? Working for Blagojevich?
Sorry, I hit publish too soon. Came back to add:
I take them with a grain of salt. Except that Hoffman has a ton of endorsements and most of the newspapers. This tells me that he can handle the questioning that, gawd, I hope, happens when up against a newspaper board. Jackson has some key names on her list, but it's not a lengthy list.