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Sun Endorsements: Use The Power!

Sun Endorsements: Use The Power! image
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tlecting ueorge Mcuovern is not going to magically turn this country into Camelot, no more than electing John Kennedy did. But re-electing Richard Nixon only condemns the Vietnamese people to more of the most destructive war ever in history. And it means more recession and more repression here. McGovern has made a lot of promises. He's already retreated on some. And he'll probably back off on others once in the White House. But we are confident he can, and will, keep the following: Ending the Indochina War in 90 days after the inauguration; deposing Thieu f rom nis South Vietnam dictatorship; permitting the NLF to take part in a coalition government until elections can be held; stopping military aid to totalitarian regimes in Greece and other countries; drastically reducing the military budget across the board; limiting the burgeoning power of the Justice Department's Big Brother apparati; appointing progressive judges to the Supreme Court; and plugging the more outrageous tax loopholes. We have omitted such liberal policies as abortion reform, marijuana legalization and draft amnesty. McGovern has been cowardly, by wavering on, if pragmatic, these. Still we think that a McGovern administration can set a mood that will promote policies like these. Of course, we hold out no such hope for more fundamental changes, like radical tax reforms, until the acne complexion of the whole government clears up. We're not overjoyed with McGovern. But he sure as heil is BETTER than Nixon, whose policies, with the possible exception of his handshake with Mao. have been the most ruthless and backward of any president this century. Remember too, that McGovern was the nominee of the most open, representative Democratie convention ever. The political bosses fought his nomination and got trumped. But if McGovern loses the election, and especially if he loses badly, the oíd hacks could be back in charge of the 1976 convention. And we may end up with a choice between Richard Daley and Spiro Agnew. U.S. SENATOR Barbara Halpert- HRP Barbara Halpert is the only candidate we're endorsing who does not have a chance to win. But a vote for her will not be wasted. According to state law, she must receive 15,000 votes across the state if the Human Rights Party is to remain on the ballot in future elections. If she doesn't get the votes, for instance, HRP will not be able to run for city council or mayor in Ann Arbor next spring. Halpert is a Birmingham housewife who has worked for several years in the abortion reform and welfare rights movements. She is running on the HRP platform, the most radical and comprehensive of any political party anywhere in this country. Halpert, without doing anything, would have to be BETTE R than her opponents. Choosing between Democrat Frank Kelley and Republican Robert Griffin is like trying to drink beer with a straw. Both Kelley and Griffirt have more faces than a deck of cards. They were n favor of school busing for racial integration two years ago when it just dealt with the South, for example, but now they're fanatically opposed to it in the North. Both are only well-dressed pimps who expect us to be their whores. But for all the people they're turning on they might as well be naked ostriches. U. S. CONGRESS None The candidates here are Democrat Merv Stempien and Republican Marv Esch. Neither rate even a token endorsement. And if you're voting Democratie, make a point not to vote for Stempien. His record as a state legislator has been particularly callous and opportunistic. COUNTY SHERIFF Fred Postill- Democrat The HRP was disgustingly derelict in not nominating a candidate for sheriff. By not doing effect, HRP sealed the election of Fred Postill. Postill is an ex-deputy with a spotty record for braviling and irresponsible use of firearms. Nonetheless, as it stands now, he is less of a risk than Republican Harold Owings, the undersheriff, or Al Per Doug Harvey, the sheriff. The reason? If Postill wants to get re-elected, and he says he does, he will have to stay in line. (We, of course, hope HRP pulls its head out of the sand and runs a candidate next time.) We've already exposed Postill's past behavior as a gungho cop so we won't detail thatl again. He says he's reformed and we'll have to hope so. But n getting down to Postill's campaign platform, we want to object strenously to his approach of "professionalizing" the sheriff's department by hooking up computer liasons to other pólice agencies and by pressing for a new jail to hold three times as many prisoners. On the plus side, however, is Postill's promise that he will "de-emphasize" so-called crimes like possession of marijuana and will tolérate a citizens "advisory" board on questions of pólice brutality. Harvey and Owings, as the chief architects of an eightyear regime marked by pólice riots and unmitigated harrassment, are unacceptable. COUNTY PROSECUTOR George Sallade- Democrat As far as your day-to-day life is concerned, this may turn out to be the most important vote you cast. Electing George Sallade may be the only way to put a check on Fred Postill, or any other sheriff. Not that Sallade is another Ralph Nader. But Sallade, a mild-mannered lawyer, vows he will crack down on consumer crooks and polluters and investígate abuses by the sheriff's department. He says he doesn't want to bother prosecuting weed cases or vagrancies or non-payment of rents. If that turns out so, the sheriff may have to hang up his six-shooters and start nosing into real crimes, like turning a river into a septic tank, short-weighting meat at the supermarket or hiking rents in violation of the rent freeze. In any event, compared to Republican William Delhey, his opponent, Sallade is a far BETTER choice. In eight years as prosecutor Delhey has earned an orc-like reputation for censoring newspapers, prosecuting more dopesmokers than anyone else and protecting Sheriff Harvey's Ilicit activities. STATE REPRESENTATIVE Steve Burghardt-HRP Steve .Burghardt could be the first radical state legislator elected anywhere in the country n at least 20 years. And even f all Burghardt does s drive the bureaucratie parasites crazy, he'll be well worth a vote. Burghardt is convinced he can do much more. Some of HRP'S progressive legislation may pass in the State Legislature, he predicts, as it has on Ann Arbor's city council. Some controversial causes, like the abolition of prisons, may gain new legitimacy if a "state legislator" speaks for them. And more people are bound to take HRP, and the left-radical third party movement, more seriously f Burghardt gets elected. This is the only four-way race for a state office this year. Democrat Perry Bullard, Republican Michael Renner and Conservative Alan Harris are opposing Burghardt. Renner and Harris are expected to split the right-wing vote, which is now a minority anyway in this district. So the race comes down to a struggle between Burghardt and Bullard. Perry Bullard is a lawyer running on the Democratie Party ticket. He has taken stands on vital issues that are sometimes close to our own. But unlike the HRP, he has no comprehensive program or analysis. Qur own experience with Bullard has shown that he tends to be a self seeker. To us the choice is easy, Burghardt wants the job to help people, Bullard wants the job to help Bullard. STATE SUPREME COURT Zolton Ferency-HRP Horace Gilmore- Democrat Ferency has been a politician, rather than a judge, for most of his live. fle ran for governor twice, then bolted the Democratie Party in 1970 after opposing the Vietnam War since 1965. He helped found the Human Rights Party. But he has also been active in legal circles, winning suit to allow college students to vote where they go to school and winning another that stopped an outlandish sports stadium in Detroit. He is, by far, the most qualified candidate in the race. Gilmore has been less courageous than Ferency. But while on the Wayne County bench he's ruled in a couple of landmark decisions giving more rights to prisoners and mental patients; and as a Detroit trial judge he was concerned with defendants' rights. Candidates for Supreme Court are nominated by political parties but run as nonpartisans. COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT Patrick Nonpart isan The prospects for Washtenaw Circuit Court leave a lot to be desired. If the position did not involve so much discretion in power, we'd probably pass this race by. But it does. Candidates in this race, even if they have a party affiliation, are not nominated by political parties and run as nonpartisans. Patrick Conlin, a nominal Republican and son of a retiring circuit judge, has been decent in setting bonds, fines and jail terms while an Ann Arbor district judge. He admittedly does not propose any significant reforms, either in judicial or penal procedures. Our only hope is that he will act human. The other candidates are Shirley Burgoyne, S.J. Elden, and Edward Deake. Burgoyne is a Democrat. Although she has pushed for abortion reform, she thinks of prisoners as "menaces to society." She advocates prlson as a "deterrent" and promises harsh sentences when she throws people n the can. Elden, a Republican, s the yo-yo trying to ream Ann Arbor's $5 pot law. Deake, also a Republican, is an old toad. COUNTY COMMISSIONERS George Judy - HRP (3-Saline) Jim Scherer - HRP (8-Ypsilanti) Mary Murray - Dem (9-Ann Arbor) Ernest Quenon - Dem Ann Arbor) Elaine Couzens - Dem (11-Ann Arbor) David Cahill - HRP (12 Ann Arbor) David Byrd - Rep Ann Arbor) Susan Newell - HRP (14-Ann Arbor) Susan Winning - HRP (15-Ann Arbor) We're endorsing all five HRP candidates. Susan Winning and Susan Newell have backgrounds in the women's and welfare rights movements; Jim Scherer in the tenant rights' movement; and George Judy in the labor movement. David Cahill is a former underground journalist now studying to be a lawyer. In the other districts we support the Democrats, with the exception of David Byrd, an ncumbent Republican. Byrd challenged the Democrats in 1970, before there was an HRP, in a district considered a safe Democratie stronghold. He ran as a Republican because the Republican establishment did not bother to even put up a token candidate. He won, in an upset, with the back ing of the radical black community. He has been the only outspoken commissioner since. He should be re-elected. The county commissioners, although without the power to pass laws, do control the pursestrings for the welfare, health and sheriff's department. GEORGEMcGOVERN: We're not overjoyed with McGovern. But he sure as heil is BETTER than IMixon, whose policies have been the most ruthless and backwards of any president this century. BARBARA HALPERT: Halpert, without doing anything, wou ld have to be bet ter than her opponents. Choosing between Kelley and Griffin is like trying to drink beer with a straw.