Saturday, October 30, 2010

An Attack Of Civility

Could this actually work?

Two candidates for a state senate seat at the other end of Connecticut have eschewed traditional campaigning — you know, the kind where you say nasty things about your opponent and then put them out over the airwaves and into people's mailboxes, all the while claiming to be the victim of a smear campaign?

These two guys, Republican challenger Stuart Norman and incumbent Democrat Andrew Maynard, have embarked on what they call a "civility tour" in which they often campaign together. They recently made a joint appearance at a grange in Sterling described below by The Day newspaper of New London:
Throughout the evening, the two men were exceedingly polite to one another, displaying conduct rarely associated with politics and government. It's an ongoing, open dialogue like theirs, both men said, that will be necessary for state officials working to solve Connecticut's budget problems.
Imagine that! Talking about serious problems and what can be done by working together to solve them.

We'll see if this type of campaigning catches on, but I have my doubts. The American people talk a good game about civility. But in the end, it's the attacks that move people to change their minds — not displays of comity and pleasantness.

I'd love to be proved wrong, however.


  1. I'd love to see this kind of thing catch on. Two adults acting like adults. Imagine that.

  2. I'm sure Maynard loves this...having an opponent who spends more time worrying about civility than telling voters why they should choose him over the incumbent. Maynard is a genius.

  3. Of course, they do talk about issues and how they differ. The article makes that clear. They just don't feel the need to tear each other down. I see nothing wrong with that.