I attended the candidate forum at the Gallo Center for the Arts on Jan. 6. They told the crowd not to film or boo, to which I disagree mostly with the former. Both of which we saw at the Jeff Denham Townhall in Denair, even though some mention this was against the rules. It looks like the rules were never enforced at Denham’s event. And they wonder why he won’t have any townhalls anymore?
I also noticed the candidates pushing the idea of identity politics instead of merit. I have no problem with electing anyone who is “under-represented,” but that should be a coincidence, not the primary focus. I challenged TJ Cox as he walked down the aisle during intermission on the fact that he said we need to elect more women, yet he is not one.
Lastly, I am concerned with the legality of the Gallo Center using their non-profit status to allow a political event to take place. I would like this looked into. At least we could hear the candidates speak this time, I imagine partly because people knew the rules would be enforced.
Ryan Schambers, Modesto