We’ve all said at one time or another: I vote for the candidate, not the party.
This item in today’s Daily Oklahoman caught my eye. It’s on the editorial page and, of course, it gigs Democratic-leaning voters for making some, um, strange polling-place choices on Election Day. I get it, given the paper’s conservative tilt editorially. No problem with that.
An editorial brief in the Oklahoman refers to a Democratic candidate for Congress who received 35,006 votes on Tuesday — even though he died in a car accident several days before the election. Then it refers to a Cleveland County commissioner candidate, another Democrat, who received 38 percent of the vote despite having been arrested three times for drunken driving.
The paper wonders whether party label mattered over candidate qualifications.
But here’s another example of the point the Oklahoman was making.
Over here, in Potter County, a Republican candidate for justice of peace actually defeated a long-time Democratic incumbent even though the GOP challenger had been arrested multiple times in recent years on felony charges involving domestic disputes.
Does party affiliation matter more in this instance than a candidate’s actual qualifications?
I will say, with considerable emphasis, “yes.”