Vote on Tuesday, November 6th!

I try to avoid writing posts that focus on politics. The country is so divided right now that there seems to be little ability to persuade. I did write about the Kavanaugh confirmation hearings, offering my observations and trying to avoid taking a side.

The exception is this post about voting. Regardless of your political persuasion, voting is one thing that almost everyone can agree is a good thing. Tomorrow is the culmination of campaigns all across the United States for elected positions at all levels of government, including, perhaps most importantly, for every seat in the House of Representatives.

Since I live in California, there is not much mystery with regard to state-wide offices: Democrats dominate California. I’m still going to vote, though, because in California there is a process whereby citizens can put propositions on the ballot that impact the State. An example is Proposition 6, which would repeal a gas tax that was passed by the legislature in 2017. Californians pay more for gas than almost anywhere else in the country and given the car-centric nature of the State, it is no mystery why a gas tax would be unpopular. The money raised is supposed to go toward transportation infrastructure. Any Californian will tell you that our roads, bridges, etc., are in need of constant maintenance and rebuilding. Those in favor of Proposition 6 complain that nothing in the gas tax law requires that the money raised be spent on transportation infrastructure. Supporters of the gas tax, including Governor Jerry Brown, warn that repealing the gas tax will have dire impacts on transportation infrastructure, and, by extension, public safety. In my view this is one of the more consequential propositions on the ballot and I hope that Californians will turn out and vote, one way or the other.

To my fellow citizens in the rest of the United States, remember that the ability to vote is not shared by everyone in other parts of the world. Take advantage of this opportunity to exercise your right. If you don’t, and you are subsequently unhappy with how things are going, I think you’ll regret standing on the sidelines.

Happy election day! Now get out to your polling place!