The County Board of Supervisors ruled against free speech today. Let me amend that; every Supervisor, except Board Chairman Bill Horn, limited your right to support candidates through a political party.
Horn registered his expected pro-freedom response. He started the conversation by saying that he opposes any limits to free speech. After public testimony (from five speakers and 16 non-speakers, against the contribution limit proposal, and exactly NO people supporting it), initiating Supervisor Ron Roberts amended his original proposal. He increased the contribution limit stating that his original number was too low.
Horn wasn’t buying it. He asked the incumbents to wait until the next election cycle so as to avoid the appearance of impropriety. Each County Supervisor answered Chairman Horn’s request with comments which were filled with logical fallacies: appeal to popularity, no true scotsman, bandwagon, and red herrings. Not one acknowledged that, by limiting campaign contributions in an election year where 3 of the 4 Supervisors are up for re-election, they look like they are trying to stifle dissenting speech.
The incumbents abused their positions, to codify into law, a limit to political parties’ involvement in their races. In other words, Supervisors Cox and Jacob made it harder for an endorsed Democrat to challenge them. Conversely, Supervisor Dave Roberts made it harder for an endorsed Republican to challenge him.
I love it when Republicans get re-elected but I love it because I think our ideas are better than the Democrats. I hate it when we act immorally to win those elections. Unfortunately, three Republicans and one Democrat did that today.
I hope every one of them is challenged by a popular, self-funding candidate with a brilliant consultant. Those will be ugly campaigns though–today’s Supervisors handed “dark” money, raised for attack ads, a big victory.