The filing deadline has come and gone, and there were no stunning surprises as 4:59 ticked over to 5:00 p.m.
The Republicans, as expected, failed to find a single candidate for Attorney General, Secretary of State, Treasurer, or Auditor. The fact that Scott Milne came through and will, presumably, occupy the top of their ticket, should not diminish the shame or embarrassment of this moment. The Republicans are, thanks to the consistent support of voters through the years, one of our two major parties. This year they will fail to uphold their duty to inhabit their given space in our politics. And whether or not you or I planned to vote for any of them, they should feel a responsibility to represent themselves.
I don’t blame the current management; I blame their predecessors, for leaving the VTGOP in such a parlous state that it’s reduced to hoping for a handful of gains in the Legislature. I’m sure we’ll hear catcalls from the likes of Darcie Johnston and Jack Lindley; but this wretched state of affairs is their fault much more than it’s David Sunderland’s or Phil Scott’s. Lindley and Johnston and their fellows are the tenants who trash an apartment, move out, and then blame their successors for the mess.
To my great disappointment, there were no gadfly slash nutbar candidates taking advantage of the Republicans’ abdication. I’d love to have seen a Republican ticket full of Emily Peytons, but no such luck.
At least, not yet. There’s still the option of mounting a write-in campaign for one of the vacant Republican slots. Much easier than gathering hundreds of petition signatures.
And congratulations to the soon-tio-be re-elected Auditor Doug Hoffer, who will have no opposition from any major or minor party, barring a write-in. Not even the Liberty Union will challenge the man who was believed to be such an underdog two years ago against consummate insider Vince Illuzzi.
There was a final-day flurry of filings for legislative offices, but those returns are not yet final. Candidates have the option of filing with their local clerks, and those functionaries have 72 hours to forward the petitions to the Secretary of State.
Now let’s ask for some voluntary crowd-sourcing. The Secretary of State’s candidate list is posted online; I invite you to give it a scan, and see if any names jump out at you. Let us know in the Comments. I’ll mention a couple right here:
— Marvin Malek is running for a State House seat in Washington County as both a Dem and a Prog. He’s a doctor, and one of the leading advocates of single-payer health care in the medical community.
— Designated shitkicker Rama Schneider is running as an Independent for the House in Orange County. He’d definitely enliven, and lengthen, the debates.
— Some guy named Don Russell is running for Congress as a Republican, one of three fringey candidates vying for the chance to get steamrolled by Peter Welch. I mention Russell because his campaign website is entertainingly over-the-top and is worth a visit. Looks like something out of the early days of Angelfire, with an ALL-CAPS HEADLINE IN A HUGE FONT and waving American flags and just about everything ugly and cheap in a website. His purpose in the race, I infer, is to make Mark Donka look mainstream.
Ooh, one of his pages is entitled “Don’s Poems.” Er, I mean “DON’S POEMS.” Here’s one about his campaign:
Doesn’t that just make you want to saddle up and take back this country? After all, I’d hate to lose my “this an’ that.” I believe that phrase was borrowed from James Madison’s Federalist Letters.
And that’s only the first half of this patriotic epic.
Ladies and gentlement, Don Russell, Real American(™).