Ron Paul Yard Signs Dot Pennsylvania Primary Landscape
Sure, there were the typical negative ads by politicians on cable TV, telling anyone willing to listen why this candidate wasn't conservative enough or why this candidate had voted to destroy Medicare and Social Security.
But, try to find a campaign sign that doesn't read “Ron Paul.” Find a TV or radio ad by a candidate for the Senate or the House giving you reasons to vote for them. Or better yet, ask a friend whom they are backing in the election and you wouldn't know there was a primary occurring today.
It isn't just in Pittsburgh that nobody seems to care about the primary. I travel throughout the state. From Erie to Scranton to Allentown to Harrisburg, and have seen a political desert develop. Four years ago, you couldn't go anywhere without seeing signs for Clinton or Obama across the landscape. I live in a ward within a district where the GOP has a significant registration advantage, a ward which came out in waves to support John McCain in 2008 and nearly defeated a two-term Democratic congressman in 2010. The poll workers are expecting less than 20% of registered voters will participate today. Think about that fact for a minute. Less than 1 in 5 are likely to vote in the primary. By extension little more than 1 in 10 will decide who represents either party in the coming general election for president, Senate, House seats and of course all state and local contests.
The Pennsylvania primary has arrived and literally nobody cares about the contests in question. This isn't good news for either party. It takes boots on the ground to win a contested general election campaign for president or Senate or even large House districts. The GOP may look back on the departure of Rick Santorum and lament the weeks and months of primary campaign activity that might have been. It is easy to forget, a good fight is tough to turn your back on no matter which side you are supporting.
The Pennsylvania primary arrived today with voter's delivering one clear message, "We aren't participating, until somebody steps up to earn our vote."