I applaud everyone running for Coeur d’Alene City Council. Having more than just incumbents on the ballot generates discussion and will no doubt drive voter turnout. Let’s strive for at least 20%.
The headline “Outsiders vs. Incumbents” summed up a brewing theme in this election. The ability to speak on local issues and promote yourself on stage are skills that develop with experience. Being enmeshed in information that committees handle has its advantages when talking to voters, especially if one exhibits an air of confidence, as many elected officials do. Authenticity, quality of character and a caring heart for the community resonates with voters too. Those intangibles can be expressed equally by those running for the first time or currently hold public office.
An outsider message does have power, as it speaks to everyday people who are busy making a living, providing for their families and wonder how they can have any influence on those who vote for us all. Relatability matters. What I like about City Council members is they generally are accessible and take the time to respond to citizens who contact them. So please, urge others to vote for City Council on Nov. 5.
If you are an outsider, you don’t have to be elected or hold a title to be a community leader, move the needle in your neighborhood or influence local culture. Concerned citizens engaged in building people power on the grassroots level can create measurable change with collective action.