Written by the Prince William County Young Democrats
Yard signs. Political mailers. Campaign commercials.
These are things that as Virginians we’ve come to expect to see daily, across the state, around this time of year. In fact, we’re probably so used to seeing them that we glaze right over the details. Even if you have been paying attention to the political races lately, you may have noticed something – or maybe not. But it’s something extremely important to note.
And that is the color and content of the Republican’s campaign regalia.
Mike May, Hal Parrish, and so many other Republican candidates in Prince William County made an interesting style choice – they’ve decided to have their campaign materials printed in blue.
While the Democrats and Republicans have no trademark rights on primary colors, let us be clear – this shift is no coincidence.
Think about the colors on a symbolic level.
While some of us pride ourselves on having full knowledge of each specific candidate, their party affiliation, and what they stand for, this just isn’t the norm for many voters with busy lives in our community. They know the Democrat and Republican parties, their overarching values, and our party logos and colors. And when they vote, often times these symbolic elements are attached to candidates.
Prince William County is changing. In the past several election cycles, the voters are coming out to vote for Democrats.
So is this sudden change of color in campaign materials a simple mistake? No. It is a deliberate and strategic attempt by the Republicans to lie and deceive these ‘rank and file’ voters by presenting themselves as Democrats to the untrained eye.
Just this week, a campaign mailer from Republican candidate for the Board of Supervisors – Maureen Caddigan – was circulating in the Potomac district, highlighting her supposed endorsements from Democrats.
In fact, the mailer said the word ‘Democrat’ seven times. Trust me, I counted.
Sounds like seven too many, considering Caddigan has been and continues to be a member of the Republican party, with a candidacy endorsed by the Republicans.
While I can claim to be flattered that all of a sudden the values of Democrats and our voting base are suddenly of such large value to the Republicans, that would detract from the point.
If Republicans in Prince William County would rather purport themselves as Democrats, rather than to take an introspective look at their own party’s images and values – which their recent advertising leads me to believe they’re embarrassed of – then that is a serious issue the voters should take with them to the polls on November 3.
Let’s be real – if you don’t think you can run for office as who you are, and the values you stand for – Republican or Democrat – then maybe you shouldn’t be running at all.
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