by Joe Kirkpatrick
When it comes to voting, if the incumbent has done a fairly decent job, with no big scandals, I vote to re-elect them. The incumbent has made do with the amount of money that the city, county, state, or country has given them to run their office. They have either stayed within their budget or exceeded it. I don't mention spending less than their budget allowed, because that never seems to be an option.
An opponent, on the other hand, can make all kinds of promises and claims concerning what they will do once elected since they do not have to prove it. Also, when an opponent makes claims of all the things they are going to do when they are elected, do you ever hear them say where they are going to get the extra money to do so? Keep in mind, if you do vote for someone who promises lots of "Blue Sky" once they are elected, either they do not deliver on their promises, or want a tax increase once elected to achieve what they promised they would do.
Try to be an educated voter. Look at what the candidate is promising, and carefully go over each point of their platform an analyze what the cost of each item might be. Are the things they propose to do really feasible with the budget that is allotted to them? Have they had any serious "hands on" successful business or administrative experience? In many political positions, many new elected officials actually have to ask employees what they are supposed to do.
Electing someone to an public office is hiring that person to manage your money. It is not a popularity contest. I have voted for people I personally did not like, but I don't vote for someone because I like them - I vote for them because they are qualified. This is not a high school popularity contest. Don't treat it like one.