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Votes

Column: Hidden Candidates

Besides a race for President in 2012, we have elections for one-third of 100 U.S. Senate seats and all 435 seats in the House of Representatives. The House has a substantial right-wing Republican majority. Prospects for Democratic gains are good, but a takeover is unlikely. In the Senate, a Democratic majority of 51-47-2 is precarious. The Virginia contest to replace a one-termer Jim Webb could be pivotal in averting a takeover by the Tea Party’s righteous renegades.

To date there is little media coverage of the Senate primary races. What coverage there is leads readers to believe there are only two candidates, both former governors—Democrat Tim Kaine and Republican George Allen. There are in fact six more announced candidates, two Democrats and four Republicans for the June primaries. The latter have proposals for action if elected, but none of their visions appear in the media. Granted Kaine and Allen records include major elective office (governor, Senator) while the others have much experience in other realms. It seems the media pre-emptively decides the newcomers, although eligible for public office, are unworthy of consideration. The fourth estate’s failure to cover candidates not on their list of usual suspects limits the field, and is one of several reasons (money being number one) that democratic governance is in decline in the U.S.

Given the records of the "established" candidates Allen and Kaine, one could make the case that some hidden candidates indeed would improve the public service. The last time we saw football coach’s son Allen, he was losing his re-election bid, and his racist tendencies were apparent, capped by use of the racial slur "macaca" captured on video. As Governor, Kaine proved to be an agent of inequality, abolishing the fairest tax of all—the estate tax. Then, as Chairman of the Democratic Party, he led the 2010 landslide loss of the Party’s majority in the House. In fairness, Kaine has a mixed record; Allen less so.

The other candidates deserve a look and your consideration. Fairfax Democrat Courtney Lynch (see www.lynchforva.com ), for example. Ms. Lynch runs a successful leadership development consulting business, has written a best seller on the subject and is a former US Marine officer. She has a vision for guiding policies for America’s future and they are more coherent than a lot of what we hear these days from dysfunction central in D.C. Is she ready to be our U.S. Senator? Check her yourself and you be the judge. I would argue that what she may lack in experience in a corrupt political system, she makes up in things like intellect, integrity and empathy.

Check out other Republicans as well: E.W. Jackson, David McCormick and Jamie Radtke. Google will tell you all about them. Just ask!