OPINION: Talk about the issues, not the opponent

Published 12:51 pm Wednesday, October 24, 2018

There came a moment in the Clark County Candidates Forum when voters could have easily thought they would get through two days of conversations from candidates with minimal to no “mudslinging.”

That was until approximately the last 20 minutes of the second portion of the forum Tuesday night.

We’ll let the voters watch the forums for themselves on our Facebook page to fully understand, but there is a stark contrast in how the majority of the candidates conducted themselves and how a select few sunk to a little lower level.

We get it. Part of politics and campaigning is talking about why you are better fit for office than your opponent.

But why do candidates feel the need to resort to lying, manipulating words and sharing misleading information in hopes of being elected?

We think it all boils down to how the people accept or refuse to accept this sort of behavior.

For the most part, we were proud of how candidates for all the offices behaved Monday and Tuesday nights.

They primarily gave well-informed, thoughtful responses to the questions. Unlike in some past years, the vast majority of responses actually answered the questions.

Nearly every candidate spoke about their own qualifications, their own bright ideas, their own experiences and their own goals, rather than trying to speak on someone else’s.

Without attempting to promote one candidate over another, we feel it is important to call attention to something Don Pasley, a candidate for District 3 magistrate said.

Pasley said he is not running against his opponent, but rather for office. That’s how all candidates should view these races.

Rather than running against someone else, against their actions, against their record, against their mistakes or against their successes, candidates should focus on running for their office, for their community, for Clark County, for Kentucky, for the people.

And the people should stop being so easily misled by negative campaigning strategies.

Maybe then candidates would focus more on why they are best for office and less on why their opponent is not.

Again, we get it. Candidates have to address their beliefs, their values, their policy ideas and how they differ from their opponent’s. But they do not need to resort to manipulation and disseminating misleading information.

If you have to do that to win, do you really deserve it anyway?

We must commend the many candidates who focused on the important issues and acted respectfully during the forums.

We urge the others to take a hard look at how they conduct themselves during the short remainder of the election season.

The voters and the people deserve it.

 

Editorials represent the opinion of the newspaper’s editorial board. The board is comprised of publisher Michael Caldwell and managing editor Whitney Leggett. To inquire about a meeting with the board, contact Caldwell at 759-0095.