First Sniff

In the coming months, we will begin to see the advent of a political season filled with campaigns and yard-signs and a steady flow of bullshit streaming out of the mouths of candidates. I, for one, am looking forward to it. It’s just like the NFL Playoffs or the NCAA Tournament. It’s kind of exciting and even if a race doesn’t affect you personally, you always pick your horse and hope that they win.

Me? I generally go with the straight democratic ticket unless there is a decent Green Party fella or lady running on a local or state level. Now, while I am no Democrat, I just can’t seem to justify punching a hole for any Republican.

I kinda like our guy…

The representative for Illinois’ 15th Congressional District in the State of Illinois, our district, is Tim Johnson, a Republican who has held the seat for three terms and will be running for a fourth – the last line of defense between decency and corruption. Granted, I am sure that he’s got himself in a bit of the sweet corruptive honey every now and again, but my guess is that in order to play ball in Washington, you’ve gotta be willing to do some things that you find reprehensible.

In any event, here’s what I know about Tim Johnson. I think I like him.

I don’t really know him as a person. I grew up playing sports with his son and I believe we partied at his house a few times in high school (when he was not there of course), but I have never really gotten to know him on a personal level. My father, despite his strong leftist leanings, has even acknowledged that he’s worthy of praise in many areas, most notably on his willingness to listen and then vote according to what his constituency demands.

So when the vote came down from Big Bastard Bush and his Shriveled Small Scrotum to cut Medicaid, Medicare, Welfare and everything else that low-income citizens need to actually fucking survive in order to give the wealthiest one percent a tax break – again – I was curious as to how my congressman voted.

Tim Johnson–along with eight other Republicans–voted against his party and slapped down the big NAY on the floor. Blah-dow!

Holy Todd Hunter! He listens!

I can say this without a shadow of a doubt. Whether I agree with him or not, Johnson always takes the time to get back to me to answer my questions. I have called on numerous occasions throughout his career and every time, usually the same day, he calls back, listens to what I have to say or at the very least, his press secretary Phil Bloomer, does the work for him. Aside from him asking my advice and voting with it, I can’t really ask for much else from a congressman.

The problem now is that I have developed

a bit of an affinity for Tim Johnson. There are things that we disagree on, but like a pair of pajamas that your grandmother made you – after initially despising them, you start to love them – I have come to terms with my feelings about him. I will find it hard to vote against him.

Can’t deny the Doc though…

But I will vote against him. Dr. Gill is running against him again and if there were ever a politician deserving to go to Congress to uphold our beliefs, it’s Dr. David Gill. The reason is simple: he’s just not a politician.

He’s an ER doctor, which lends to his credibility of being able to work under pressure. The issues he stands up for are the issues that I stand up for. He is pro-civil liberties, pro-affordable healthcare, pro-choice, against the War in Iraq and for the War on Terror – which means that by helping our neighbors – not BOMBING THE SHIT OUT OF THEM – we might find a way to co-exist.

There are so many things that he has dead on. Except for votes. Last election Gill lost to Johnson (61 percent to 39 percent) and didn’t win a single county in the district. This year he’s looking for the seat again and I recommend that all of you seek out the information and look into what’s what. This is YOUR congressman. And you should care.

This Sunday, David Gill is having a benefit at the Canopy Club in Urbana to raise funds to take down Tim Johnson this November. If you are a supporter, please come out. If you are unsure, use the Internet and inform yourself.

I really do like Tim Johnson, but David Gill is like Barack Obama: politically on the money except he looks a little more like me.

Seth Fein is from Urbana. He has never voted for a Republican and if it weren’t for David Gill, that streak might have ended this year. He can be reached at

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