Former Republican congressional candidate Mark French sent out an e-mail to supporters late last month and provided a variety of theories as to why he only received 20 percent of the vote against incumbent Rep. Denny Rehberg. They include, with some excerpts from the letter:
• Little name recognition:
I talked to another man that same morning. He told me that he was going to vote, but he did not know who I was. I wanted to tell him that I was not running for dog catcher, but for the sole congressional seat in his state. I wanted to ask him, if you are going to vote, don’t you have an obligation to do a little study? I wanted to tell him as he looked down his nose at yet another politician that our campaign has spent around $60K of volunteer money trying to tell him that I am an option.
• Cross-over votes:
I do feel that if we are going to have elections that mean anything, we might consider closing the primaries. Moral conservatives don’t tend to play crossover games, so I conclude the liberals are the only ones who benefit from open primaries. The discussion needs to take place. I believe we have liberal Republican leadership in bed with the D’s, manipulating elections to put a liberal Republican against a Democrat in the general election, insuring a liberal victory regardless of who wins the general election.
• Voter fraud:
In addition, voter fraud hangs in my mind. I do way more QC around a glucose test in the lab than we do around counting votes. Not good!
• Voter apathy:
We are apathetic though, we are not informed. We don’t seem to care. Not you who read this letter, but the general public that I hope to inspire you to reach. People may be this way, partly because it seems to be beyond repair. It is not. Most are angry with Government, but will not do anything about it.
• Absentee votes:
I had many people who were sorry that they had already voted prior to me contacting them. It is also very frustrating to knock on doors only to find that the person had already voted. I argue this has not made voting easier. It has made voting inaccurate, frustrating for all involved and way less secure. Absentee voting only benefits the person who maybe out of town or disabled.
As I’ve written here previously, I thought French would do better in the primary than he did (although I didn’t think he would win).
French, however, was even more optimistic. He writes that he “thought the numbers would be much closer. I would not have been really surprised if we would have won with a good margin.”
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