Election 2020 is a big deal. According to the researchers at VOTE SMART: FACTS MATTER there will be 11,488 political contests, involving 14,438 candidates in the United States on November 3, 2020. Truthfully, this website crossed my screen after a simple Google search of political candidate information. Their information about candidates from sea to shining sea is non-partisan and informative. I entered the names of several South Carolina candidates and received useful data in evaluating them. If you would like to visit this site and survey a few candidates, please click here.
That's really the final strategy in resisting the hype of this election cycle. We certainly need to know our own personal values and worldview, where we stand on the many hot button issues of this election, and basic information about the platforms of the prevailing political parties. Now, there should be research about the candidates on our ballots, at the national, state, and local levels. And, that's a challenging task for most of us, assembling and studying that much information. That's why the VOTE SMART: FACTS MATTER site was such a choice find. They're got election 2020 covered.
When considering candidates for office what you see isn't always what you get. Over the years our estimate of politicians and people vying for office has been lowered a good bit. It's partly because politics has become such a dirty business. There's also the dilemma of professional politicians, those who will do just about anything to be elected, and who will usually double-down to stay elected. It was a campaign issue in 2016 when citizen Trump promised to "drain the swamp". By the way, Mr. Trump didn't create that phrase. Politicians as early as 1903 had mentioned the need to "drain the swamp". In the 1980's Ronald Reagan had promised to "drain the swamp" of the vast bureaucracy driving government, the lobbyist pests swarming over Washington, and perhaps those elected officials serving a life-time in office. Much of the campaign hype at election time involves imposing term limits on those serving in Congress.
The choice between experienced candidates and newbies is perplexing for most voters. Washington is a complex city, government being the most prolific occupant. The learning curve for newly elected officials is steep. The Congressional Management Foundation provides training resources to assist newly elected members of Congress in learning the political ropes necessary to serve. Against that, those officials with previous experience can usually navigate the swamp more efficiently. Still, their being re-elected typically involves deals with political allies and factions that may be detrimental to their representation. Choosing experience or inexperience is a confounding reality.
And, that is a daunting challenge for most of us. Already, as the political heat ramps up I'm praying for the wisdom, discernment, and good sense to make sound political decisions for the November 3 vote. Scripture will guide my process. These are a few verses I'll be praying---
My son, if you receive my words and treasure up my commandments with you, making
your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; yes, if you call
out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and
search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and
find the knowledge of God.
Proverbs 2: 1-5, ESV
Blessed is the one who finds wisdom, and the one who gets understanding...
Proverbs 3: 13, ESV
Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment.
John 7: 24, ESV
But test everything; hold fast what is good.
1 Thessalonians 5: 21, ESV
It's election season. The hype is already here and will be increasing. Each of us should know our personal values and how they shape our responses to the issues of election 2020. We should also grasp the stances of the political parties and their candidates. And, we should decide.
Join me in praying about it.
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