In Neck Deep

Things have been heating up both literally and figuratively in Jefferson County. Nothing, and I mean nothing, stirs the pot more than an upcoming election and when you have three in one calendar year the broth is sure to boil. This past week there was some unusual excitement on the election front as one local candidate was disqualified to run on the republican ticket. I have covered many meetings and brew ha ha gatherings in the County and beyond but this is a new one on me.

editorial-logo3Jefferson County is, without a doubt, a red county that lies in a red state. Most people are under the assumption that it is impossible to win a race in Jefferson County if you are not on the republican ticket or supported by the republican party. I have to say that I have seen a subtle shift in local politics over the past several years and party identification may actually have an expiration date in the future. Millennial are loath to cling to any party, especially the ones that they consider to be the ruination of a Nation. The lines, for moderates, are very blurry and it is easy to see that one day it may be the independents that are ruling the roost. But then, will that make them the ruling party? Nothing is truly black or white in politics. Most are rolling around in muddy shades of gray and that is not appealing to the younger generation’s sensibilities.

Anyway, the cold hard facts are that the Republican Party, on the state and local level, determined that Kenneth Lodwick candidate for Jefferson County Circuit Court Clerk was not a “bona fied” republican. Interesting, very interesting. But the part of me that insists that fair play should be a part of responsible decision making is asking what happens now? Lodwick cannot run as a republican and he is too late to turn in his petition as anything else. For him, for this election cycle, it appears to the write in votes or nothing. As we all know, it is hard enough to get people to the polls to push a button little alone write in a name. Effectually, I would guess that he is finished for this election cycle.

I have no problem with the republican committees decision, it is up to party leadership to determine who is a viable republican candidate and it appears that Lodwick did not meet the criteria. My ethical problem is this, I believe that every qualified person has the right to seek office, no matter their party affiliation. If this had happened a few weeks earlier, Lodwick would have had the opportunity to run as an independent or another party candidate. The time line of the decision is what is making my nose a little twitchy. Granted it is not my decision to make and I am not the one that sets the time line on such things. But, all things considered, it should have been considered. That’s all I am saying. Then again, why run as a republican if you really aren’t a republican? That answer appears to be the easy one. And here we are, neck deep in gray. Home sweet home.

Source: K. Depew, News Director