Deadline Now: David Davis and Fletcher Word
Friday, April 20, 2012
Dr. David Davis, Professor of Political Science at the University of Toledo, and Fletcher Word, Editor and Publisher of The Sojourner's Truth, join Jack Lessenberry for a lively conversation about politics -- national and local.
Here are Jack Lessenberry's Final Thoughts for this edition of Deadline Now:
Some years ago, a friend of mine was elected to the Michigan Court of Appeals. The next morning she went to her law firm, still glowing over her victory. A young man on the elevator recognized her. “Are you Marilyn Kelly?" he asked. She was.
He told her, “You know, my son voted for you.” That struck her as a little odd, since the man himself didn’t look to be over 30.
“How old is your son,” she asked. “Four,” the man said. “I want to give him the experience of voting, so I take him in the booth with me. I vote for the important positions and then let him vote for the others.”
Well, that deflated the newly elected judge.
But the man in the elevator was wrong. All elected offices are important -- sometimes more so than they seem. Marilyn Kelly, by the way, went on to become chief justice of the Michigan Supreme Court, and was the deciding vote in a number of crucial decisions.
Nobody really knows whether Mitt Romney can beat President Obama this November. Nobody knows what will happen if Rob Portman ends up running for vice-president, or if Senator Sherrod Brown can persuade Ohio’s voters to give him a second term.
Across the border in Michigan, Senator Debbie Stabenow is trying to win a third term, something Republicans desperately want to prevent. Democrats in Michigan are just as desperate to try and wrest back control of the state house of representatives, so they can put the brakes on what they see a radical Republican agenda.
Michigan unions also want to protect collective bargaining rights for both public and private sector workers by enshrining them in the state constitution. Business groups want to stop them.
This will be a very crucial election year. Yet a large number of people still won’t vote. Four years ago, the number of people who didn’t vote at all was greater than the number voting for either Obama or McCain. Sadly, that will almost certainly be true again this year.
And that’s something I don’t understand. It seems to me that we have more at stake now than at most times in our history.
The parties today stand for two very different visions of who we are as a people, and offer different road maps as to where we should be going. It’s hard for me to imagine being indifferent to all this.
Besides, this stuff is just plain fascinating. So do yourself and our country a favor. Get in the game. Register and vote.
Future generations may be glad you did.