Tom's Corner - To vote or not to vote: there is no question
KALAMAZOO, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - With just 26 days until election day, voters here in Michigan and across the country are seemingly faced with an unusual conundrum: to vote or not to vote.
With political discourse at what surely must be an all-time low, and with new revelations about--and accusations against--the candidates almost daily now, on November 8th either Senator Hillary Clinton or businessman Donald Trump will be elected to lead the most powerful country on the planet.
Tonight in his corner, our Tom Van Howe says not voting is not an option this time around. Even if you have to hold your nose.
In my 45 years as a newsman, I have never seen a gloomier, snarkier, more uninviting, more un-presidential presidential campaign as this one.
Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are not well-liked or widely trusted. Their debates have made an embarrassing mockery of grown-up conversation. I can't begin to count the conversations I've had with people who've decided they just aren't going to vote this time around.
And I get it. Their campaigns are attacks on each other. Their debates seem unmoored in real-people reality.
On the Trump side, I don't know if he's lying or simply doesn't know what he's talking about. Mexico is sending us rapists. He likes people who don't get captured. Lying Ted. Little Marco. He's gonna put Hillary in jail. She's the devil, with a hate-filled heart. The latest women to accuse him of sexual assault are lying. He's okay because Bill Clinton is worse than he is.
Hillary, meantime, seems disconnected. Sometimes her answers to questions are so loaded with legalese i can't figure out what she's saying. She's lackluster. She made millions from speeches to the very people she vows to fight. She doesn't trust the media and went for months without a news conference. Her smile and voice grate on people. The trickle of unfavorable Wikileaks is opening up to be a river. Each day brings new uncertainty.
This is not fun.
But to say you're not going to vote? Doesn't work.
Failing to vote allows special interests to win. It happens all the time. For the record, there are seven parties to choose from for president. If you don't like the first two, choose one of their others.
And all across the state there are good people running for office because they think they can make a difference. They're running for Congress, for the state legislature, for the state and local boards of education, for prosecutor, for board of trustees of major universities, for county sheriff, for judgeships. Every one of them affects our daily lives in one way or another.
So you're thinking you don't know enough about them to cast a vote? Go to vote411.org, from the non-partisan League of Women Voters of Michigan, and get a rundown on every candidate across the state.
After months of complaining, it's time for us voters to responsibly pick up the slack and get the best bang we can for our votes.
Twenty-six days to go.
In this corner, I'm Tom Van Howe.