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OPINION: Council election results easy to read

By Betty Buginas
Wire Editor

Iím always a little skeptical of the efforts to analyze the results of elections and jump to any big conclusions. I mean, Iíve talked to people about their votes. In any race, the knowledge of the candidates and issues varies widely, as do peopleís reasons for why they vote the way they do.

But looking at the results of the El Cerrito race I canít help but offer this analysis: Sandi Potter and Janet Abelsonís election makes sense, simply because their political beliefs are more in line with the majority of voters in El Cerrito.

And I want to say that because a lot of people in El Cerrito are passionate about politics and, especially if they lost this one, they are going to come up with all sorts of complex theories about why the election went the way it did.

Yes, there was a flier against Kathie Perka and supporting Sandi Potter that was more deceptive than it needed to be. If we track that flier back to any of our political allies we should certainly let them know we think they crossed the line. The same points about Perka and Potterís politics could have been made, perhaps even more effectively, without misleading voters into thinking the flier came from Republicans.

But still, if you support things like child care and affordable housing, you look for candidates who support those things too. You donít vote for someone whose political philosophy is way different simply because you donít like a piece of campaign literature.

No conspiracy was necessary here Ė El Cerrito is a heavily Democratic town and Potter was the only Democrat on the ballot. Abelson has shown through her first term that on local issues she supports many of the same causes as most El Cerrito Democrats. Yes, local elections are officially nonpartisan. But as voters we donít set aside our political leanings when we cast votes in local elections. We just have to work a little harder to figure out which candidates support the same kinds of things we do.

Run dates: 2002-11-06 - 2002-11-27

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