UPDATE2: Now we have at least one supporter of Terri Green at a polling location (Haggard Library) claiming to represent the North Texas Tea Party and claiming Terri Is TeaApproved by us. While no candidate has complete control over all supporters, it’s important to make something VERY clear:
TERRI GREEN IS NOT TEAAPPROVED BY THE NORTH TEXAS TEA PARTY: BEN SMITH IS
(Nor will she EVER be, based on her demeanor & antics in this election).
One other piece of misinformation that may be going around: Bob Dry is NOT an incumbent; he is the SON of Judge Dry, who is retiring. And inheritance of of position is NOT an American trait (Except maybe in Massachusetts with the Kennedys) . Angela Tucker is the TeaApproved (and CCCR endorsed) candidate there. We don’t think this is coming directly for the Dry family; probably an ‘excessive’ supporter. These supporters have got to understand something; they are doing more damage than good being either so deceitful- or mis-informed themselves.
It also looks like some rumors are going on about Constable candidate Joe Wright, based on a sexual harassment charge against a Joe Wright- in Idaho. This is similar to the mis-identification of Jon Cole for a DIFFERENT Jon Cole that has a drug charge in Austin (Jon Cole DID let apparently a traffic violation slide into a warrant, but he cleared that.) Having a common name makes such errors simple to make- especially if you are DELIBERATELY looking to make them. (For the record, this author- Michael Openshaw- is NOT the same Michael Openshaw found guilty of art theft in England 14 years ago. Google can be such a disappointment sometimes. )
It also looks like Cesare Venegoni needs to go back to a the classroom and take a course in “Introduction to the Bill of Rights”. He claimed that holding more than one campaign sign at a time was an ethics violation? For an unpaid citizen volunteer? REALLY???
Boy, we’d LOVE to see the court case on THAT one! “I’m sorry, you’re only allowed to express one opinion at a time.”
(CLARIFICATION: we had a nice chat with Cesare and he tells us what he said was he thought a private citizen could do so, but a Judge could not; I still HIGHLY doubt that there is any formal ethics violation for doing so- certainly nothing that would be constitutional. It MIGHT rise to a level of unseemliness, at the very most.)
Bottom line is, harassment of people with a differing viewpoint at the polls by certain candidates continues, as does the dissemination of misinformation.
UPDATE: Since the individual involved continues to ‘behave badly’- repeatedly harassing our volunteers at the polling stations and being continuously confrontational over our recommendations, it is time that we ask if this is the type of conduct and character - by Terri Green and a few of her supporters (certainly NOT the majority) – that Collin County voters want representing them on the bench? Not what we would ever consider judicial demeanor. We will continue to report if the ‘poll demeanor’ improves- or worsens. (Mega-Kudos to our intrepid volunteer Gerald Meazell, who has taken the brunt of much of this, has kept his cool, and continued to work the poll with copies of our flyers).
We would also like to commend the attitude of Ryan Dry, representing Bob Dry at the polls. Despite a difference of opinion in that race, he was gracious and accommodating to both our representative and to Angela Tucker- his brother’s opponent. It speaks well of Bob to have his supporters ‘play well with others’ in this venue. A starker contrast we cannot imagine. (though it DOESN’T change our opinion that Angela is the better candidate.)
One thing the process of vetting candidates does, is it challenges you to determine the real character of the candidates. And character is never more apparent during adversity (which my orphan kids in Uganda have taught me so much about) or during rejection. How a candidate handles being told our committee (and, folks; it IS a committee- of about 10. This is NOT a one-man show.) has decided to TeaApprove others says a lot. Some seem to shrug it off, actually understanding there is NOTHING personal in what we do. I will single out Jeran Akers for being a class act in dealing with it. I really like Jeran, probably because he HAS handled great adversity (a double-lung transplant, no less!) and good character was forged because of it. The issues we had with Jeran were again minor policy ones (District 67 is TOUGH; but our pick- Jeff Leach- is a GREAT choice and wonderful character, with youthful enthusiasm and a stabilizing family- nothing like changing a few diapers to get you feet back on the ground.)
But there are others who take such rejection as a deep personal affront. They nearly ooze with the feeling of entitlement for the position they seek. They belong to the right clubs, they know the right people, they’ve done the right volunteer work. So the office BELONGS to THEM. How DARE we say it doesn’t! Sometimes this is the candidate, sometimes it is a supporter; but normally, it starts and continues with the candidate.
Well, we dare, because politics needs to shift from being a social game to one based on policy and principle. And a sense of entitlement leads to arrogance in the legislature- and behind the bench (NEVER a good thing there!) Our government system is, in many ways, broken and one of the reasons IS because some view it as a social club, not a responsibility to serve the people AND the future.
We are a small group who put in a LOT of hours to come up with our recommendations, based on Tea Party principles: we only ask people to take it for what it’s worth, considering how it was formulated. We have done our first review of judicial candidates which include different vectors for those principles. And one of those additional vectors IS personal demeanor; judge’s robes is a place where personal arrogance can be very harmful. The more this election goes along, the more sure we are that our recommendations are good ones. And, as voters see these candidates in the field, keep these aspects in mind when you pass your own judgements. It will help improve governance.