During last week’s 85th District State House forum between Republican incumbent Fred Keller and Democratic challenger Jennifer Rager-Kay, an audience member asked whether the candidates thought there was going to be a Blue (Democratic) Wave or a Red (Republican) Wave in the Nov. 6 midterm elections.

Both Keller and Rager-Kay, I thought, handled the question well.

“It’s unfortunate that we’re talking about any wave, because we should talk about good public policy and what that means,” Keller said.

“I don’t think that either red or blue wave will effect my candidacy,” Rager-Kay said, adding she thought, if anything, there was going to be “a young wave,” with more young voters getting involved in the process.

That’s good. Candidates should be talking about issues that matter, not waves.

While there’s no doubt the Nov. 6 election will be, to some degree, a reaction to the Trump administration’s first two years, if that’s all it becomes it will be unfortunate.

Nationwide, Americans will vote for all 435 seats in the House of Representatives, 35 of 100 seats in the Senate and governerships in 36 states and 3 territories.

In Pennsylvania, we get to vote for governor, a U.S. Senate seat, and in 18 federal House races. We will also decide 25 of 50 Senate seats and all 203 state House seats.

In each of those races, there are real issues that matter to real people that candidates need to address — issues like health care, immigration, gun laws, school safety, mental health treatment, women’s issues and more.

In the weeks leading up to the election we’d like to try to bring focus to those and other issues Susquehanna Valley people care about.

That’s why we have put a poll up on our website, and are running a print version of it on Page B3 today. We want to hear from you about what issues you’ll be considering when you go to the polls.

You will go to the polls, right?

Once we’ve gotten your feedback, we plan to publish stories about the top issues you select and report on what Pennsylvania candidates have had to say about them in a series of stories we’re calling “Five Issues in Five Days,” starting Sunday, Oct. 28.

One of the most important things a community newspaper can do is provide clear, unbiased information about the issues and the candidates’ positions on them.

We want to do the best we can to give you the information you need to make informed choices in the voting booth.

I understand that some voters are going to just vote straight party regardless of specific stands on specific issues. It’s also certainly true that time is precious and few of us have a lot of it to devote to thoroughly studying the issues and the candidates.

That’s where this project comes in. Our goal is to provide a one-stop resource for voters to get at least the basics on the key issues and candidates’ positions on them.

We hope you’ll participate in our survey and help us determine the issues that you believe merit our focus.

Most of all, we hope you’ll vote on Nov. 6. 

Email comments to dlyons@dailyitem.com.

Recommended for you