Editorial: The Informed Voter

Will Roberts, Panogram Staff

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I want to begin by saying I lean toward one candidate more than the other, in spite of both Mitch McConnell and Alison Grimes airing false claims in their campaign ads. According to the website www.Politifact.com, neither candidate has aired a commercial that has been rated any higher than “Half true.” We know candidates, especially those in such a close race, are known to fudge the truth to get ahead of their opponent. If you would like to research either candidate at all, I would suggest beginning with this article so that when Election Day (November 4th) rolls, around you have knowledge on both candidates.

Senator Mitch McConnell has been quoted as saying, “Economic development is a Frankfort issue. That is not my job.” This may be an initial shock to readers because issues such as jobs are why voters elect representatives. Jobs drive the economy; subsequently, jobs are essential to growth in America, both for individuals and for the country as a whole. This quote was indeed said by McConnell, although out of context. McConnell was in Lee County Kentucky for a speech on jobs. The reporter from the Beattyville Enterprise (Edmund Shelby) who interviewed McConnell in the hallway before he delivered his speech did not stay to report on the speech itself. The Senate Minority Leader’s office released a statement later that said: “I (McConnell) visited Lee County to talk about a top priority of mine: jobs. I was surprised to see a headline about my visit that sent the exact opposite message to the one I was trying to convey. Encouraging positive economic development and job growth is at the center of what I do everyday.” McConnell misunderstood Shelby’s question and answered as if the reporter was referring to “Specific industries in Lee County.” If Shelby had been asking such a question about Lee County, that would be a job of the state Commerce Department. McConnell believes that “had he [the reporter] stayed for the speech … he would have understood that my whole speech was about job creation and the job destruction that’s gone on as a result of the Obama administration.”

As for Candidate Grimes, she was six when McConnell was first elected. Grimes has climbed the totem poll in political offices. She is currently the Secretary of State for Kentucky, which some consider a stepping-stone to higher office.

Distinguishing between these two candidates is easy when considering the issues of gun control, the Affordable Care act (also known as Obamacare), and coal. Conservative Kentuckians are opposed to Affordable Care Act and gun control. Grimes, a National Rifle Association member, invited McConnell to shoot with her on a gun range to show that she is in support of Second Amendment rights. Despite her display of alliance with the NRA and Second Amendment, the NRA has already given McConnell the “Defender of Freedom” award, and NRA lobbyist Chris Cox has said that NRA support for McConnell will be “at full strength.” Grimes, a Democrat, must be seen toting Obamacare for the sake of her political identity, although some, specifically conservative Kentuckians, hate Obamacare. Grimes supports keeping the Affordable Care Act, while McConnell has viciously opposed the ACA. Both candidates rally behind coal, which has notably been called “King coal” in the commonwealth for year, which is one cause both candidate can get behind, and rightly should. If you live in a “coal county,” you would understand exactly what I am saying.

In conclusion, I believe that McConnell has been a great senator since he was originally elected. McConnell currently serves on the Agricultural committee and Appropriations committee, just to mention two. If you think McConnell has not done the best job a politician could do since election in 1985, remember that he is evolving with the modern world. Experience is what we need on Capitol Hill considering the lack-luster experience our president with lack luster had prior to his presidential inaugurations.

McConnell should continue to serve Kentucky as Senate Minority Leader. ”

I hope he becomes Senate Majority Leader if Republicans win a few more Senate seats this November. Keep in mind that while the Republican Party itself is split between moderates and Tea Partiers, McConnell is the one who can bridge the gap to unite Republicans in the United States Senate.

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