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Sunday, January 22, 2006

Mark Ritchie (Secretary of State)

--posted by Tony Garcia on 1/22/2006

Mark Ritchie is running as DFL candidate for the Secretary of State. He gets a head start simply for being an opponent of Mary Kiffmeyer. But now let's score him through his website.

Sadly his website has very little insight into his positions on anything much less positions as a Secretary of State candidate. I find this troubling. Of all of the positions on the ballot the one that should be most concerned about an informed voting population is the Secretary of State. This lack of position would not be as heavily downgraded in other races. For this one it is marked down heavily (- 5).

One thing that is mentioned in the personal section of the biography is the fact that his daughter was killed by a drunk driver. I do not mean to sound cold, but of what relevance is this to the Secretary of State race or the campaign? I hope this is the only mention of this as I would find this to be a very inappropriate exploitation of his own tragedy, an act which I have very little patience for (- 2).

With no stated platform we can only judge him on those he surrounds himself with. He quotes Paul Wellstone (- 2), in fact, putting Wellstone in a positive light gives us quite a bit to speculate about his beliefs. He also won the 2004 Progressive Activist of the Year Award (- 3). I think we are getting a clearer picture of this guy WITHOUT him giving the public his positions.

His endorsements are something to be afraid of as well. First of all I thought the DFL hated PACs, special interests and organized groups to give money to candidates. An obvious hypocrisy from the DFL since they say nothing about union money in DFL campaigns and only whine while PACs support GOP candidates. Nonetheless I think the it should be pointed out that one of his endorsements comes from a PAC (- 2) and the PAC is the extremist group ACORN (- 6). ACORN revolts me and the very fact that Ritchie is endorsed ALREADY by them gives me reason to penalize him heavily.

Next is the growing list ALREADY of union endorsements. Yes 3 of them are steelworkers, but he has 4 union endorsements...and NONE from worthy business groups. This troubles me especially since the Secretary of State is the ONE position that should be more pro-business than anti-business or anti-free marketplace (which is what a pro-union stance is lately) and should be more pro-business than any other elected office in the state. For this obvious contradiction I deduct heavily again (- 6).

I have a feeling that one reason there is no list of positions from Ritchie is because he wants to hide how partisan he actually is by his own nature and thus how partisan the office would be if he won. Perhaps his positions are not on his campaign website because he knows he cannot win for who he is. I do not know, but I have a feeling that his score will take a bigger nosedive IF he ever puts out a platform.

At this point I calcualte a -26 from the five point advantage that he started with for a current score of -21.

********** UPDATE **********
After reviewing a comment about the mention of Ritchie's daughter I found myself to be too harsh. Ritchie did only mention his daughter and what happened to her...no different than saying "she graduated from this college".

The points have been restored.


Blogger Young-DFLer said...

How is Ritchie exploiting his daughter's death? He mentions it once on his website and you have to go through two pages to get to that one reference. That hardly seems like exploitation to me. It is just him giving personal information. Most candidates say how long they have been married and how many children they have. This is no different.

January 26, 2006  
Blogger Tony Garcia said...

I reviewed my assessment and stand corrected. You are right.

Thank you very much for your input.

I have corrected that on the posting and will soon on the scoreboard.

(Maybe I should not do that kind of stuff at 3AM!!)

January 26, 2006  

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