Thanks to the miracle of the absentee ballot, my wife and I are done voting. I’ll tell you who I voted for and why. I won’t call these my “endorsements” because I don’t think that any of these candidates probably need or even want the endorsement of some nutty blogger banging away on a keyboard in his pajamas.
Iowa Governor: I voted for Eric Cooper (Libertarian). No, he’s not going to win the governorship, that’s Terry Branstad’s job… for some reason. Cooper and his Lieutenant, Nick Weltha (and the rest of us Iowa Libertarians), will define victory as getting at least 2% of the vote. If we achieve that benchmark in a statewide race we will achieve “major party” status under Iowa law. Then, it is hoped, we can become a big enough fly in the ointment for the two major parties that they will adopt many of our policies just to get rid of us. To see the plan, go to Cooper’s website and read the section titled, “We need 2%.”
Secretary of State: My vote went to Jake Porter (Libertarian). Although he’s only 22, Porter is already a heavy-lifter in the Iowa Libertarian Party. He and a handful of others do all the work while the rest of us sit back and watch (or blog about it as the case may be). In addition to his work for the party, Porter works full-time in retail, is working on his degree in Business Administration, and owns the Des Moines Free Press. I wish I had his energy! The Secretary of State, among other things, oversees Iowa’s elections. It would be nice to have an impartial third-party referee in elections between the Republicans and Democrats.
US Senator: I voted for John Heiderscheit (Libertarian). I used to like Chuck Grassley but the guy is bragging about being the one who wrote the Medicare Part D (prescription drugs) bill. Social security and medicare are going to bankrupt the country and the Bush-era Republicans poured gasoline on that fire when they were in charge. Now they’re criticizing Obamacare? The difference between Medicare Part D and Obamacare is a matter of degrees not principle.
US House of Representatives, District 1: Although there’s a Ben Lange sign in front of my house, I voted for Rob Petsche (Libertarian). (Certain others in my house may have voted for Lange however, hence the sign.) I like Petsche and agree with him on the issues, unfortunately, as a third party candidate he lacks the political big guns to unseat incumbent commie Bruce Braley, only Republican challenger Ben Lange has any chance. So I voted for Petsche just out of quixotic principle, but secretly I hope that Lange kicks Braley’s butt.
Attorney General: I voted for Brenna Findley. Although I voted for a few Republicans for Secretary of this or that and for some of the county-level dog catcher-type positions out of a lack of options, Findley was one Republican that I was actually excited to vote for. Findley was one of the few Iowans who thought highly enough of the Second Amendment to show up at the Second Amendment March in Des Moines in April and spoke at the event. Although numerous other states have signed onto a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of Obamacare, our current AG has refused. If elected, Findley says she’ll get Iowa in on the legal action against this unconstitutional federal usurpation. You go girl!
Iowa House, District 31: I voted for Lee Hein. I’ll admit I don’t know much about the guy. I heard him speak once at an event. He didn’t rattle the rafters with some Pattonesque speech like I crave, but he seemed like a common, competent farmer running for office, and that’s fine with me. Although it wasn’t the determining factor, the incumbent Ray Zirkelbach’s comments equating the Tea Party movement to the KKK didn’t help earn my vote.
Retention of 3 Supreme Court Justices: Since I’m not opposed to gay marriage, it might surprise some that I voted against all three judges. Incumbents in the legislative and executive branches are taking hits in what hopefully will be “The Great Voter Revolt of 2010,” so why not the judicial? The message is simple: If you’re in a position of governmental authority, be afraid, be very afraid.
Iowa Outdoor Recreation Trust Fund Amendment: I voted no. According to BallotPedia.org, “If the measure is approved by a simple majority of Iowa voters, the next time the Iowa Legislature approves a sales tax increase, the measure would allow 3/8ths of one cent to be used in support of the Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Trust Fund. This would establish permanent revenue for natural resources and outdoor recreational programs in the state.” If the state legislature raises the sales tax to fund some urgent need, a certain percent will automatically be syphoned away to the DNR, whether they need it or not. That doesn’t make sense. As we’ve seen at the federal level with Social Security and Medicare, putting programs on budgetary “autopilot” is not a good idea.
Iowa Constitutional Convention Question: The question is simple: “Shall there be a convention to revise the constitution, and propose amendment or amendments to same?” My vote was, “Yes.” I explained why here.