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day permlink Friday, 1 November 2002

permlink Voting Guides

Local voting guides from the Washington Post: Virginia, Maryland, DC.

See also the links to the various League of Women Voters guides for the area [NBC4].

If you don't live near the Beltway, check out: permlink  

permlink VA sales tax: Metro endorsed it

Here's a complication for how I'll vote on Tuesday: The Metro board endorsed the VA sales tax increase on September 19, 2002:

Metro Board backs northern Virginia transportation referendum [WMATA Press Release]
The law authorizing the referendum already identifies $2.8 billion in specific projects to be paid for by the funds generated by the tax increase -- much of it earmarked for Metro-related transit projects. Those projects include $250 million for the Metrorail Infrastructure Replacement Program ... including the procurement of new rail cars and buses to meet growing customer demand as well as improving access to existing Metrorail stations. It also includes $350 million toward funding transit along the Dulles Corridor. Development of a new transit area along the U.S. Route 1 corridor, along Columbia Pike, and along U.S. Route 7 are also included in the legislation.

"Funding this proposed referendum will improve transit service throughout the region," said Metro Board Chairman Christopher Zimmerman. "It is vital toward addressing Metro's capital and operating requirements including funding of critical capacity enhancements."
...and in the Post voter guide there was a page full of names of big- and little-shots from both parties who are in favor.

So here's my current thinking: I'm in favor of more Metro development. This tax, while badly designed, would at least help.

Shall the perfect be the enemy of the good? Is a lame measure that produces some good now worth discarding for an better measure which may never be proposed, given the number of interests who are likely to turn any proposal into a handout for themselves like this one? Or would the defeat of this measure mean a better proposal would have to come down the line? And how long would we have to wait for it?

Still thinking. permlink  

permlink Kurtz on cliches

Poor Howard Kurtz seems frustrated by the predictability (and nastiness, with several examples) of these last few campaign days...

The Grand Finale [Washington Post]
There's no tomorrow. It all depends on rallying the base. We're confident of getting our message out. Turnout could be crucial. It's about the future, not the past. People are tired of negative politics, like my opponent's lies. It's about the children. My allegiance is to the people, not the special interests that bankrolled me. We're taking no voter for granted. It's too close to call. Our tracking is showing a late surge. It's not about me, it's about our ideas. The only poll that counts is on Election Day.


In a campaign's final days, the discourse is choked with cliches... Most reporters don't want to predict who's going to win ... so they salt their copy with little code phrases in which they try to anticipate the direction of the wind, while maintaining deniability if a sudden squall blows the other way.

The consensus: An "absolute photo finish," as analyst Charlie Cook told the San Francisco Chronicle.

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