Monday, November 5, 2018

Opinion: The Contentious Words and Name Calling Turns

Kevin Surbaugh

photographer Kevin Surbaugh
The November election is tomorrow. How many people will vote tomorrow? Last week Douglas County reported that 23% had already voted (through Oct 29).  Since then the Kansas Secretary of State has reported 300,000 had already cast a vote in early voting statewide.  That kind of turnout is unprecedented, for a midterm election. Will that turnout hold true through election day tomorrow.  We will see, but for now, let's focus on my endorsements for this years election.

On the Federal level, you probably already seen my endorsement of Steve Watkins over Paul Davis.
photographer Kevin Surbaugh
In the race for Governor of the Great State of Kansas, Laura Kelly (Democrat), Kris Kobach (Republican), and Greg Orman (Independent) are considered to be the three battling it out.  There are two others running, another independent and a Libertarian. They aren't even polling higher then single digits,  Then again, neither is Orman. So why is he considered a major candidate and the other two aren't? It goes back to when, he ran unsuccessfully for U.S. Senate against Pat Roberts, when without a Democrat in the race, he came in a strong second place.

The Governor's race is interesting to me. It, of course, is the meat and potatoes in Kansas politics. Our focus boils down to Kelly and Kobach.  Polling, which I had alluded to already, have the race very tight. A poll conducted by Emmerson has Kobach edging Kelly 44% to 43% in a poll conducted between October 26 and 28.
In another poll, conducted about the same time (Oct 17-27), ISPOS and Reuters in conjunction with the Virginia Center of Politics reported that Kelly edged out Kobach 43% to 41%, in a statistical dead heat.
The race has been interesting, to say the least. Like both of the Congressional races in eastern Kansas, it has been contentious. With former Republican Governors and U.S. Senators endorsing the Democrat. Republicans who have ignored Ronald Reagan statement, "never say anything bad about fellow Republicans."  It is true that Republican politicians have supported Democrats before, likewise, Democrats support Republicans. However, those instances were done in secret. Not publicly broadcasted. It is part what is expected from the leadership of any party. I, myself have personally served as a precinct committeeman. A position that, in part elects the chair and other leadership of their respective party. In turn, they also help promote the candidates of their party, they cannot publicly support any candidate from another party. Doing so goes against the grain of what they were elected to do. So the actions and statements by that handful of Republicans (some of who I call friends) are disappointing.
So, who am I endorsing? Well, I actually cast my vote, with having to be in the office until 4:30 and then driving in rush hour traffic back to home, it was just easier. Even though I am among the 23% plus that has already voted, it is important for me to lay out my cards and tell my readers who I voted for and thus who I encourage each of you to vote for also. That candidate is Kris Kobach. True, there are issues I disagree with him on.  One of which is medical marijuana. Something that has been proven to offer relief for some kinds of pain and medical conditions. Something that Missouri and Utah are voting on tomorrow to join the growing list of states that will legalize it for those with a doctors prescription. I think Kobach could come around with some education.   His commitment to hold the line on taxes is a big reason I support him.
State Representative
In the race for state representative, Eileen Horn is running unopposed, so I wrote my own name in.  If you so chose, you can also write in the name of D. Kevin Surbaugh for state representative. I have not campaigned for the position, nor will I, but I will accept the position if there are enough write-in votes.
Live Reporting
Finally, I will be live posting results as they come in tomorrow night. The first post I expect will be around 7:30, thirty minutes after the polls close. Who will win? We will find out tomorrow night.

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