Did he say "ruining?" Yes, he did. But the good doctor - MIT doctorate, actually - is merely running for office, as demonstrated in this unintentionally hilarious ad. So then, is the editorial board of The Chronicle, the first paper in the United States to cover the AIDS epidemic, really antigay? No, it isn't. And does it believe in democracy? Every last board member would undoubtedly say it does. Why, then, did the editorial board exclude the Greens and other marginal parties from today's 1 p.m. proceedings? For that matter, why did it nix third parties in its whole series of debates, which are being webcast live on CBS5.com? The Chron responds after the jump. We asked Chronicle editorial page editor John Diaz, who heads the editorial board, why third parties were excluded, when they would likely have made the debates more interesting. This was his response:
Fair enough, John. Or perhaps not fair, if you're talking to the excluded parties. To play devil's advocate, though, third-party candidates do bring ideas to the table that the big guys won't, due to political expediency. The Dems can't afford to offend the unions, for instance, and the GOP may kowtow to the business community. Issues that may be truly important to voters simply go unmentioned in these debates because the major candidates are beholden to their institutional supporters.
He's right, though, that none of the third parties have a chance in hell. We'll leave you now with today's voter registration numbers for the East Bay, where you might expect Greens to perform their best.
Voter Registration as of Oct. 18, 2006 (percentages rounded)
Alameda County Total: 671,252 Democratic: 371,076 (55%) Decline to State 145,239 (22%) Republican: 118,333 (18%) Green: 12,591 (2%) American Independent: 10,725 (2%) Libertarian: 2,891 (<1%) Peace and Freedom: 2,922 (<1%) Natural Law: 1,143 (<1%) Misc. Parties: 6,332 (<1%)
Contra Costa County (percentages rounded) Total: 486,029 Democrat: 233,852 (48%) Republican: 144,091 (30%) Decline to State: 87,650 (18%) American Independent: 9,156 (2%) Green: 4,217 (<1%) Misc. Parties: 3,146 (<1%) Libertarian: 2,212 (<1%) Peace and Freedom: 1,207 (<1%) Natural Law: 498 (<1%)