04/17/08 — Time to refocus: National election might be fun, but it’s time to look elsewhere

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Time to refocus: National election might be fun, but it’s time to look elsewhere

Knock, knock. Anyone there?

This absolutely has to be best season ever to be a politician running for local office.

The rest of the world is so busy watching the Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton soap opera that they really aren’t concentrating too much on what anyone else is saying about the upcoming primaries and the fall election.

The same is actually true for the state candidates as well — especially those who have Republican leanings. The rest of the state is so busy with the Richard Moore/Bev Perdue TV battle that it is hard to remember that there is anyone else actually running for governor.

But it is time to change all that.

Over the next couple of weeks, North Carolinians in general and Wayne County residents in specific are going to have to take off their goggles and look closely at who else is vying for leadership positions in the county and state.

We are going to have to start asking some really important questions about education, taxes and health care. We are going to have to decide what we want for the future of our county and then search for the candidates who have the best understanding of what those priorities are.

That means we are going to have to set aside the Democratic Party’s nomination melodrama, at least for a few days.

It is time to list our priorities and then listen carefully to local candidates’ plans to address them. And, just so you know, there are already quite a few concerns on voters’ lists.

We plan to start asking our local candidates for county commissioner, legislator, judge and school board what they have to offer their community.

We are going to ask specifics, too. No standard, easy “say nothing” answers will be accepted.

And while we are at it, we are going to throw a couple curve balls at our state hopefuls as well to see if they have what it takes to represent Wayne County.

The first of our measurements will be which candidates for governor and lieutenant governor have thought Wayne County was important enough to make a personal visit here to greet the voters and to hear their concerns. You might be surprised to find out who has no plans to make the trip.

You can be a part of this interview process, too. Let us know what you want to know from this year’s slate of candidates.

And after we have picked this round, we can get back to the business of the next president of the United States. The drama will still be there.

Published in Editorials on April 17, 2008 12:54 PM