Meg Whitman has taken a beating over this whole not voting for twenty years. But now it seems that she’s been totally vindicated! She was registered to vote in Santa Clara County in 1999 for eight months. Now, she didn’t vote in any elections during this period, but I’m sure she was very civically active.
It turns out that Santa Clara County had lost some data on old registrations, including Whitman’s. Whitman’s campaign is triumphant!
“Meg is adamant about her recollection of voting in San Francisco in the 1984 and 1988 presidential elections, and the Sacramento Bee ran with a misreported item they let through their editing process,” said Tucker Bounds, Whitman’s deputy campaign manager. “Meg’s voting record could certainly be better, but it should have been accurately reflected, and that’s all we have been arguing for.” (CoCo Times 10/06/09)
But as San Jose State Professor Larry Gerston points out in the above article, this is hardly about voting once or twice. The campaign is trying to make this into another opportunity to attack the media. The damnable liberal media is always out to get the good conservative and all that jazz.
If they were concerned with the underlying issue, they would probably try to ditch the whole “her voting record has no excuse line.” The only possible reason to keep this story alive is try to get some base conservative support by making the press the boogeyman. And, honestly, given her electorate, it isn’t a bad idea.
This story will never go away for Whitman though, no matter how many times she explains the voting deficiencies, at every debate this issue will come up. It has to, it goes to the very heart of civic engagement, and whether politics is important enough to take 5 minutes to vote.
For a long time, Meg Whitman didn’t really feel that voting was really worth her time, save for a few occasions. Many Californians, particularly the ones who vote in gubernatorial elections, feel differently.