Important elections with the potential to nudge the course of history are often won by small vote margins. In 1994 only four thousand votes out of more than two hundred thousand ushered in the Republican/Libertarian order that brought us McMorris Rodgers and an entire eastern Washington political infrastructure that has tried to tell us how to think for more than two decades.
Every vote counts. In November, 2017, control of the State of Virginia’s House of Delegates remained in Republican hands for lack of a single vote (and a coin toss). This event was not unique.
If you haven’t thought out for whom you’re going to vote in November, now is the time do your research. Go to MyVote.wa.gov and click “Voters’ Guide” to see your ballot. Click on the names to see a short bio and a photograph. Visit their websites, contact their campaigns, meet the candidates. Write down the names and your thoughts.
Why now? Why not the night before the ballot is due? Simple. A little investigation now multiplies your voting power. There are just 58 days to the November 6 deadline. Anyone who waits until the election to do their research gets a chance at only one vote per contest. In contrast, if you do a little investigation now you can multiply your vote many times by talking with friends and acquaintances, going door-knocking for a candidate you like, or writing a letter or letters to the editor of one or several local papers. Your contacts with your fellow humans could make the critical difference come November.
Why a letter to the editor? Making yourself write a letter is a good way to compose your thoughts. Those thoughts become talking points, so even if you never get a letter published your diligence has value. If it does get published you have contributed to the drip, drip, drip that forms the opinions of other people. If you get one published mark the date on your calendar so you know when you have a chance of a second one. Otherwise, rest assured your submission not only helped you to clarify your thoughts but contributed to the proportional wave of letter submissions.
This appeal to letter writers is in response to several of my readers suggesting the email I sent last Thursday on the Spokane County Treasurer’s raceprovided good material for a letter to the editor. In the email I contrasted David Green’s expertise with that of the belligerent unqualified career politician opposing him. I have on my computer Baumgartner’s campaign emails from which I quoted. I would be happy to forward them to anyone considering writing a letter. Just click Reply and ask me for them.
For more letter writing material visit the archives of my daily emails I try to maintain at jxindivisible.org. Feel free to use the material there without attribution. I make no personal claim to any of it. I strive for accuracy and try to offer links to back up what I write, but I write so others may use it. I neither have nor do I wish for any copyright.
Here’s a handy guide provided by one of my readers to CD5 newspapers and their opinion pages:
NEWSPAPER ADDRESSES CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT 5, the ten counties
Letters to the editor
Pend Oreille County
Newport Miner/Miner Online (Newport) 509-447-2433 (300 word limit)
The Spokesman Review 509-459-5000 (200 word limit)
The Pacific Northwest Inlander
1227 W. Summit Parkway
Spokane, WA 99201
Phone: (509) 325-0634
Fax: (509) 626-5875
The Pacific Northwest Inlandereditor@inlander.com
Cheney Free Press(Cheney) 509-235-6184 (350 word limit)
Deer Park Tribune(Deer Park) 509-276-5043 (? Word limit)
Statesman Examiner(Colville) 509-684-4567 (350 word limit)
Independent (Chewalah) 509-935-8422 (limit?)
Ferry County View (Republic) 509-775-2425 – (limit?)
Davenport Times (Davenport) 509-725-0101 (100-200 Word file if possible)
Odessa Record(Odessa) 5099822632 (no limit)
Wilbur Register (Wilbur) 509-647-55551 (will consider snail mail letters)
Walla Walla County
Walla Walla Union Bulletin (Walla Walla) 509-525-3300 (200 limit?)
Whitman Gazette (Colfax) 509-397-4333 (no limit)
Daily Evergreen (WSU ) 509-335-3194, 509-335-4573
Dayton Chronicle (Dayton) 509-382-2221 (500 or less word limit)
Times(Waitsburg) 509-337-6631 (400 word limit)
Pomeroy East Washingtonian (Pomeroy) 509-843-1313 (1 pg. double spaced) P.O. Box 70,
Pomeroy, WA 99347
Lewiston Morning Tribune(Lewiston) 208-743-6397, 208-743-9600 (limit 250)
Keep to the high ground,