With the 2010 governor’s race now coming into view, it’s refreshing to see some candidates, in all parties, campaigning with a grassroots approach.
On the Republican side you have Ray McBerry, the lone candidate in his party who had the foresight to challenge Sonny Perdue in 2006. Perdue, who no doubt will go down as the worst governor in the history of our state, quite frankly needed challenging and how he won re-election was the result of lazy voting quite frankly. He has been a disaster on all fronts.
McBerry is giving it another go in 2010 and has already been crisscrossing the state for several months spreading the word about his campaign in true grassroots style.
Libertarian John Monds is also trying to make some noise although he is focusing more on next November. Since the Libertarian Party isn’t afforded the opportunity to vote in a statewide primary, candidates are chosen at a state convention. Monds appears to be the sure choice for the Libertarians after gaining more than a million votes in 2008 running for a seat on the Public Service Commission.
In the Democratic camp, Ray City mayor Carl Camon is seeking the nomination against much better financed candidates and was in Winder this week addressing a meeting of the local Democratic Party.
Camon stressed you shouldn’t have to be from a big city or a millionaire to be governor. He said it’s those candidates who meet those requirements who have convinced voters to think that way.
McBerry, Monds and Camon all face very long odds in becoming the next governor of Georgia. However, each one has to receive credit for being on the road, putting their ideas before the voters and taking part in a process that is as American as apple pie.
Quite frankly, I’ve been impressed with some of the things all three of them have to say. One thing which impressed me about each is that I know none of them would be indebted to big money or big corporations. Each stands on his own and what they say on Monday would still go on Friday, I believe.
So often we are presented with candidates with expensive suits, fancy cat donors and an overall appearance of being completely out of touch of the average working man and woman. How can a candidate who is a millionaire several times over relate to the average family who fights to pay its bills or to have a little extra money at Christmas time?
The answer: those types of candidates cannot.
As the 2010 governor’s race heats up in the next few months, listen for a lot of promises from a lot of candidates. You’ll hear talk of doing this and doing that and scaring voters into making their decision when they go to their respective polls.
However, it’s good to know in Ray McBerry, Carl Camon and John Monds you have choices who are not your typical slicked up politician who makes back-room deals. I believe any of these men will do well as governor, certainly better than the one who has occupied the mansion for the past eight years.
Our state is facing a crisis on several fronts. Education is still poor, the economy remains in the tank, transportation needs work and I just can’t imagine millionaire candidates really have the answer.
It’s certainly not too early to begin looking at who your choice will be in 2010. This is an important election for our state. It’s time we put someone in the governor’s mansion who at least has some idea of what’s going on.
As we send Perdue out of the door, let’s consider some of the candidates who can relate to me and you.
Chris Bridges is editor of the Barrow Journal. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.