When is the right time to put your campaign boots back on?

June 12, 2013

State Seal of Montana.

Although I am very concerned about the federal government, as we all should be, and even though the Montana Legislature is adjourned, I still can’t bring myself to focus on federal legislation.

If I may use an analogy related to my line of work, if the foundation on an apartment building is cracked and shifting, it doesn’t do any good to patch up the stress cracks in the walls and ceilings on the top floor.

One of the buildings I manage was built in 1886, and we had to deal with a very similar situation. The only difference was, it wasn’t the foundation, it was one of the support beams, but the solution would have been the same either way.

The first thing we had to do was lift the pressure off the support by jacking the building up. Then we replaced the old timber.

That’s exactly what we need to do right here in Montana.

Unlike some states, Montana is particularly vulnerable, to a specific kind of federal persuasion. We don’t have enough citizens to maintain all of our infrastructure entirely on our own. So when we try to resist federal programs and policies that we don’t agree with, they threaten to withhold funding.

Unfortunately, the only way to fight back against something like that, is to convince enough of our citizens, to take a look at what they really need, and what they can do without.

At the same time, we need to elect lawmakers that are willing to make those hard decisions.

My answer to my own question is, I never took my campaign boots off at all. While I was busy tracking bills and advocating my opinions, during the recent session, I was taking notes. I paid close attention to who did what, not just what was done, but of course I focused on my own priorities.

Now that the session is over, I’m researching the who and what, of some of the other bills I didn’t have time for, but I’m not just stockpiling facts, I’ve put a great deal of thought into my strategy.

I don’t claim to be an expert. The 2012 election season was the first in which I took an active roll as a campaigner, but I learn quickly. I also have a character quality, that I think can be very useful. Even when I succeed in an endeavor, I still look back and ask myself, what more could I have done?

I most certainly wont go so far as to call the results of the last election a success. From my perspective, the conservative cause did not do well at all in Montana. Neither of my candidates for the state legislature made it, and of course we didn’t manage to elect the Governor I wanted, but I’m far from considering capitulation.

Looking back on my own efforts, and comparing it to the results, I have reason to believe I was at least, on the right track. Although I definitely don’t take credit for it, there is one particular coincidence that I wont ignore.

More than anything else, my primary strategy was to take every possible opportunity, to talk to people in person, and the one race I put the most effort into, had an encouraging final result.

Although my candidate for state house lost the election, he lost by a closer margin, than any Republican has in this district, since the last time the districts we re-drawn. Out of 5,154 votes, he only lost by 424. I know that wasn’t all my doing by any means, but I know I made a contribution, and I think my strategy is something I can build on.

Last time around, neither candidate was an incumbent, so I didn’t have a voting record to talk about. All I really had, was the substance of the multiple personal conversations I had with my candidate, and of course his character qualities, which I encouraged countless random individuals to observe for themselves.

Before and during the last election, I didn’t know about the websites for the state legislature, which I assertively encourage my fellow citizens, to get to know very well, for their own benefit.

http://leg.mt.gov/css/house

http://leg.mt.gov/css/senate

Now that I am aware of this treasure-trove, of factual information, I am actively preparing for a full scale, verifiable information based, bombardment campaign.

While the propaganda pushers, and disinformation artists, are busy shoveling mud onto the campaign trail, I will be using my 1st amendment rights, to build a stone pathway over the top of the muck. Every verifiable fact I assert, will be a stone I lay on the path, and I’m hoping that every voter I can convince to verify my facts, and other assertions, will in turn reach out their hand, to pull others up out of the filth.

In the coming months, between now and the real start of the next campaign season, I’m going to continue to gather my facts, but more importantly, I’m going to continue to encourage others to do the same.

Glenn W. Uncles Jr.

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