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Mothers -- The Necessity of Politics
July 14, 2013 - Joselyn King
If necessity is the mother of invention, it's necessary today's political parties be inventive and seek out mothers as candidates as the 2014 election year approaches.
I frequently hear from political insiders about their difficulties finding candidates to run for office. Have they called their schools to find out who the PTA presidents are? Who is responsible for organizing the car pools for the soccer team? Who just put together a successful fundraiser for the football moms?
I call it the "Shelley Moore Capito factor." She didn't first get elected to the West Virginia House of Delegates in 1996 because she was the daughter of former Gov. Arch Moore -- probably in spite of that fact, actually. The reality is she had three children all involved in many activities, and she became involved, as well. Sitting along the sidelines at their sporting events, she came to be known among the parents as someone to work with who could get things done.
Thus when Capito did decide to run for office, she already had in place a large and strong base of support in the community. There quickly sprung up a coalition of adult supporters and even teens ready to go canvass for her in their neighborhoods.
"But we need somebody with money who can finance their own campaign ...." That's a constant lack-of-battle cry I hear. Well, for starters, a qualified candidate who is a mother might just have access to money.
But the money issue really is overrated in politics -- except for higher offices, where politicos use the need for money as an excuse to hold by-invitation-only fundraisers closed to the public at large. The money they raise is only needed to craft a specific message to the voters over which they have total control.
As for the lower offices -- the candidate who loses the most shoe leather walking their wards and districts typically wins.
In the end, it's just hard to beat a mother.
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