Monday, September 30, 2013
Candidates need challengers
2014 primaries in Illinois are now under way with signatures being collected. In many cases, the incumbent is not getting a challenger.
And even then, it is a Chicago sport to get challengers off the ballot in order to ensure a win. Even President Obama did it to win his state Senator office.
The elections are essentially a free opinion poll that gives you a true view of what your active voters think (and not those who like to answer the phone and talk to a pollster). You hear what are issues that parts of your community are passionate about, and to be honest about where you might be failing.
In Chicago, in particular, having multiple opponents are extremely helpful. With Chicago results, you can see precinct by precinct who is with you and who is not. You can then address issues of importance in the right area (for example, if the south part votes for one candidate, then you know those issues, and solutions need to be focused on in that part, even if different than other locations.)
As we mentioned, the removal of an opponent could be done. But if you are a candidate of integrity (especially an incumbent, who proved yourself once to voters), you need to ask if this is necessary. And you may find out that it is truly time for you to step down, again, in a way with integrity (as opposed to simply resigning for no significant reason other than selfish ones).
To sum up our advice: don't be afraid of challengers, and consider them legitimate critiques of your political situation.
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