Editorial: Straight answers trump money
July 3, 2008 · Updated 11:05 PM
Oak Harbor is small enough that money isnt everything - or even nearly everything - in politics. Its more important how long youve been around, who you know, your history of working with others, and your ability to give straight, honest answers that will decide who will be the next mayor.
The city has three candidates seeking to replace retiring Mayor Patty Cohen. As reported in Saturdays News-Times, Jim Slowik, a former school board member who now sells used cars, is by far the leading fund-raiser with more than $15,000 on hand. Challenger Sue Karahalios, a former state legislator and present city council member, has only a couple of thousand, while Paul Brewer, the Navy bases recycling czar and the city councils resident iconoclast, proudly claims to have no money.
In this dead-of-summer campaign season for the new August 21 primary election, the most direct and least expensive path to success is old fashioned straight talk. When asked by the public about priorities, dont obfuscate, dodge, bob and weave, generalize, or call for further study. Just tell it to them straight. If your priority is helping business, say so. If you want the long-pursued city pier to actually materialize, say so. If you want the Windjammer Plan followed to a T, say so. And promise to stick to your number one priority until it actually exists.
The public is tired of promises, plans, studies and discussions. It wants something concrete accomplished, and the candidate who can most clearly describe what he or she wants to do as mayor will have a good shot at winning, regardless of how many dollars they have in their campaign chest.