• Election Day: The Exciting Midterms

    Election Day is like the Super Bowl to me. I love them and now that my term as Minority Election Inspector is up, I thought I would be able to relax this Election Day. Nope, I am now a Democratic Party Committee Person for district and so I will be out there pushing a few of candidates and making sure the Republicans aren’t up to no-good. Despite my heavy involvement here in the suburbs of Philadelphia, I am more interested in what is going on in Arizona on Election Day.

    Openly atheist candidate James Woods is running for Congress in Arizona’s 5th congressional district. And while it is true that the fact that James Woods is an atheist is exciting, I find that I am actually more excited about his campaign because of the way he has run it.

    A little known fact about me is that in 2004, I attempted to run for Congress in PA-16. The Party leader in a neighboring county (still in the district) didn’t like me. He thought I was too young and had too many independent ideas. The district is heavily Republican and at the time no Democrat even wanted to run because they knew they would lose. I jumped in because I love that type of challenge. I thought it would give me an opportunity to try out some bold political moves without fear of losing because no one would expect me to win.

    Anyway, this Party leader didn’t like me and told me he would actively find someone to either push me out of the primary or run against me in the primary. The former is what actually happened. For the record, that candidate ended up losing three times by wide margins and that same Republican still holds that seat a decade later.

    James Woods is running the type of campaign that I wanted to run. He is open about his atheism and he has used many opportunities to reach out to nation and local media. He has stayed positive and used innovative tactics.
    I love the giant 2D-Woods signs that he created for his campaign. In addition to the standard lawn signs, the Woods campaign made a few signs that were 2D full size signs of James Woods. That’s a lawn sign people aren’t going to just pass by and forget. It’s awesome!

    When the local pro-life group sent him a form letter, Woods seized the opportunity to make a creative and effective response by sending them a condom with his campaign logo on the wrapper and a detailed letter explaining his position and why. It was media gold.
    The Woods campaign also tackled the gun regulation issue with a video in which James Woods talks about how easy it was for him to buy a gun without any background check or anything else even though he is blind. The video was well produced and did a great job of not being too heavy handed, but still getting the message across. It really was brilliant.

    I also got to interview James Woods about all this stuff. Check that out.

    In all honesty, because the district he is in is so heavily Republican he probably won’t win, but I am still hoping he does. Not just because he is an atheist, but because he has run such an amazing campaign. If he is able to win or at least come very close to winning, then maybe more candidates will start running unconventional campaigns. That will make my future “Super Bowl” event even more down the road.

    So if you are in Pennsylvania, vote for Tom Wolf. If you are in Delaware County Pennsylvania, vote for Tom Wolf and John Kane. But if you are in Arizona-5, please, please, please with sugar on top, vote for James Woods and make sure you tell all your friends to vote for him too. And if you live anywhere else in America, just go vote!

    Category: AtheismfeaturedHumanismPoliticssecularism

    Article by: Staks Rosch

    Staks Rosch is a writer for the Skeptic Ink Network & Huffington Post, and is also a freelance writer for Publishers Weekly. Currently he serves as the head of the Philadelphia Coalition of Reason and is a stay-at-home dad.