I had a political science professor in college who claimed that he no longer voted. It was kind of sad. But when asked why, his response was simple – “It only encourages them.”
For those of us that have lived through the 2014 election cycle in Louisiana, we can sympathize with the sentiment of not wanting to encourage them. Millions of dollars have been dumped into our state in an effort to reduce our two major U.S. Senate candidates to little more than WrestleMania characters. If you believe the crap that you see on TV being peddled by these outside groups, we’re essentially choosing between Hulk Hogan and Hack Saw Jim Duggan.
In reality, we’re choosing between Senator Mary Landrieu, an incumbent senator who chairs the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, Dr. Bill Cassidy, a two-term congressman who also happens to be a well-respected physician, and Col. Rob Maness, a retired Air Force veteran who now operates a 225-acre farm.
We’ve come a long way since the 1991 gubernatorial election between Edwin Edwards and David Duke. Regardless of our political ideology, surely we can all come together over an Abita Amber and agree that the state of Louisiana is fielding much better candidates on both sides of the aisle these days. We should be proud of that. (Ignore the fact that 87 year-old Edwin Edwards will likely make the run off for the 6th Congressional District. Every dieter needs an occasional Twinkie. They just taste so good.)
We’re a state on the move. We’ve got a lot to be excited about.
- The oil and gas boom.
- The dominance of our maritime industry.
- Our students’ steadily rising test scores.
- The energy of Hollywood South.
- The emergence of the new entrepreneurial class known as “Silicon Bayou.”
- And year after year, both the Saints and Tigers are competitive enough to keep us entertained throughout an entire season.
It’s a good time to be living in Louisiana. Even more reason why we should stay engaged.
So as you are bombarded with robo calls and commercials from candidates and outside groups, resist the temptation to sit this one out. Instead, quietly download a little Louisiana app that should give you reason to be optimistic about our future.
You may not know it, but Louisiana actually has a voting app. This little app can be downloaded to your mobile device with a touch of a button. It allows you to access a sample ballot for your given district. It also allows you to track the returns in given contests as the polls close. It is a cool little app that allows us all to stay more engaged in the process.
But more importantly, our little voting app is a quiet reminder that Louisiana is on the move. We’re modernizing. We’re becoming a smarter state. We’re competing with our neighbors in Texas, Mississippi, and Alabama. And guess what? We’re winning.
Go see if you can find the voting app for Texas, Mississippi, or Alabama. You won’t find it. Because it doesn’t exist. (Or at least I can’t find it)
We’re on the move. Let’s stay engaged. Geaux vote.