No Surprise Here

RECEIVED Tue., Oct. 25, 2016

Dear Editor,
    The Chron's editorial staff seems to struggle with the concept of brevity when it comes to political endorsements [“Chronicle Endorsements,” News, Oct. 21]. Y'all endorsed Democrat after Democrat, burning through inordinate amounts of recently deceased pulped trees until someone finally summarized it in your endorsement for U.S. Congress as follows: "That alone is a strong reason for a straight Democratic vote." If one has a strong liver and friends with great senses of humor, I propose a drinking game where you each do a shot every time the Chron well ... chronicled ... the reasons why the Democrat in a given race is manifestly unqualified, then endorsed them anyway – two shots for the time you described why Dawnna Dukes "has drawn a challenger from every party like vultures circling a carcass ... we struggle to give the nod to Dukes."
    But hey, this is the Chron we have all grown to love, proudly not hiding its partisan biases and cognitive dissonances, swallowing its pride and proclaiming y'all are "proud to endorse Democrat Hillary Clinton ... with enthusiasm." We'll leave it as an exercise to the readers to break the seal on a fresh fifth of hard alcohol and go through back issues, pounding back a shot every time you spot a more ... measured ... assessment of Hillary, especially during the heady days when it seemed Bernie might take her down.
    To be fair, though ... Michael King's column, "Point Austin: Your Vote Is Your Voice" [News, Oct. 21] is widely separated from the commentary on the race for Railroad Commissioner, where the Democrat in the race is so poorly regarded by your staff that y'all endorsed ... no one. Well, sort of – you did kind of wink and mention that the Green Party candidate "may represent her party's best shot at getting the 5% of the vote needed to keep the Green Party on the ballot for the next election cycle."
    No doubt it was an oversight that you failed to mention that this seat is also the Libertarian Party's best shot at getting continued ballot access, via the candidacy of Mark Miller.
    Might I suggest, if the Chronicle actually believes that "your vote is your voice," that you revise your lack of endorsement and suggest that your readers strongly consider voting for either the Green Party or Libertarian Party candidate in this one race. Why? So that those of your readers who are frankly appalled at what the two major parties coughed up for presidential candidates this year can, if this pattern repeats next time around, continue to have alternative candidates to voice their discontent.
    Because letting the Legislature use ballot access rules to winnow down your electoral choices is like telling someone that their vote is their voice – then duct-taping their mouth shut.
Jim Henshaw
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