Meet the Candidates

Ben Horsley, a friend and candidate for House District 19 this year, put together a meet the candidates event as part of his campaign on Saturday at Bountiful City Hall. This was not a chance to meet the candidates for District 19 (where I don’t live anyway but if I did I’d be voting for him) but the candidates for U.S. Senate. It included all the Republican Candidates as well as other political figures in Utah (most prominently Rob Bishop and Mark Shurtleff). Although I have been interested in this race for over a year and thus have been closely studying the candidates for a long time I had not previously met Tim Bridgewater or James Williams – I could hardly pass up such a great opportunity right in my own back yard (so to speak). Thanks Ben!

Having studied the candidate previously I had some idea of my order of preference, but I really enjoyed this debate as it allowed me to really get things sorted out. Here’s my order of preference:

1. Mike Lee – I don’t think that surprises anyone considering I already publicly endorsed him but after hearing him with all the other candidates together I am that much more confident that he should be our Senator come next year.

2. Tim Bridgewater – I really like Tim overall. I think he’d make a decent senator – I just think that Mike would be better at filling the Constitutional duties of a senator.

3. (tie) Laura Bridgewater – she sat in for her husband for the first bit of the debate as he was running late and she had a good grasp of what our next senator should be and do – she’d be a great support to Tim if he were elected.

3. (tie) Sharon Lee – I’ve heard her speak before and believe she is a good support for Mike. I hadn’t thought to rank her among the candidates until I saw Mrs. Bridgewater in her husband’s place among the candidates but I think either of those two spouses would be better than the other candidates.

5. (tie) Bob Bennett – Despite his failings Bennett is not the worst choice available to us in this campaign. Like a typical Washington insider he is so busy viewing everything as “extremely complicated” that he seems to have lost sight of most of the simple facts that should be informing our complicated decisions.

5. (tie) James Williams – I had high hopes for James. I had heard really good things about him from people attending other debates, but after listening to him I am forced to conclude that he is a good and well-intentioned man who is out of his depth politically. Philosophically he has good principles, but I don’t believe that he would be an effective force at representing those principles or the people of Utah.

7. Cherilyn Eagar – I remember being excited about the possibilities when I started investigating her as a candidate, but seeing her in a debate showed her as combative, passionate, and disrespectful. If I wanted someone like that there must be 20 other states I could move to where I would have two such Senators in place already. She argues that having a conservative woman in the Senate would be a powerful thing – I’m sure that’s true, but I’ve already named two other conservative women from Utah who would make better senators.

3 comments for “Meet the Candidates

  1. Bill
    February 24, 2010 at 10:03 am

    After a review of the websites of each of the following candiates: Eager, Lee, Bridgewater, Williams, and Bennett (in that order) I want to add my observations:

    1. Cherilyn Eager – Look at her “Issues”, each question is phrased so that disagreeing with her is ludicrous. If things are as black and white as she says… I vote for a revolution. She would be the next Nancy Pelosi, she’d simply be from Utah and be a republican. I vote “NO” for her Eager

    2. Mike Lee – He’s already involved. He takes on hard issues, and simplifies them to basic ideas. I’m not a fan of everything he says, but that doesn’t mean he’s wrong on those issues. I managed to punch through the haze that is tax revenues and bring out that not many people actually PAY taxes. I don’t like hearing that, and it means TAX REFORM is appropriate… But, he’s right.

    3. Tim Bridgewater – I like Tim’s simplicity. I appreciate the idea of simple bills that are transparent. He would bring a good addition to Obama’s call for transparency (something that Bush lacked). I appreciate the ideas. I’d say he isn’t a bad cadidate at all. But, he wants to return power to the State while increasing competition by interstate commerce. The two ideas are in opposition, and I don’t personally think he has thought through all his details.

    4. Roger William – Roger has spent much of his time in Texas. Now, in order to further his carreer, he wants to be a Utah Senator, I guess the race was to big in Texas. He references Texas very regularly, which is appropriate because he was Secretary of State there. The history in politics is there. The facts are as muttled as you would expect from a politician (for instance “Americans work until April 23rd just to pay their taxes”. That is both true and false, but he has found a way to slant the facts in favor of his position (a popular position), as apposed to slanting his position to fit the facts.

    5. Bob Bennett – Bob’s been around the block (quite a few times actually), he has traction in Congress because his feet are ALREADY on the ground. He knows the issues, he can see solutions, and the media is having a hard time pinning any REAL dirt on him (that’s a good sign that there isn’t any real dirt). He’s a good candiate. He CAN be effective. But, as you watch his approach, it is pro-partisanship. He is a fan of status quoe. He doesn’t mind following the party line to punish the other party, even if the other party has a viable solution to a real problem.

    My list is a little different than David’s (but mainly because I haven’t added any spouses), I also do not see a tie between Bennett and Williams. I think Bennett is a better candiate that Williams.

    I agree with David (but don’t tell anyone.)

    • February 24, 2010 at 10:20 am

      Just in case you want to go look again James Williams is the candidate for Utah Senate. I don’t know who Roger Williams is but James was definitely never the Secretary of State in Texas.

  2. Anonymous
    February 25, 2010 at 9:41 am

    Roger Williams is running for the US Senate from the State of Texas

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