I don’ know what it means, but we’re, what, four weeks out from the election, and we’ve got a contested Senate race (I can tell it’s contested, because I cannot listen to the radio because the incumbent and her allies are spending an awful lot of money to oversimplify things and impress upon me that the other candidate wants to cut health care costs by smothering senior citizens with pillows and reselling their medications) along with local and state races, and I have not seen many Republican yard signs.
As one drives through the city of Springfield, one sees the occasional signs for local candidates identified by only a single name and, frankly, no indicator of what the singularly monikered person is running for, signs for that one guy who’s always running for office and losing (no, not that other guy who’s always running and losing–he got himself on the Republican primary ballot this year because he knows the only way to win down here is to be on the Republican line), and a couple others, including one or two for the former educator and more recently former legislator running for presiding commissioner probably in the “let’s put a tax increase on every ballot” mold of the outgoing Republican office holder who lost in a primary because at the local level, at least, Republican voters don’t want raising taxes as a platform plank. I don’t see many, if any, for the incumbent senator, either.
The dearth of Republican signs, though. How to read those entrails? It’s probably not apathy. The people who casually follow politics and might have picked up a sign from the election office or gotten one from a friend who was passing them out watch the news. They’ve seen that elephant regalia can invite vandalism or worse. How engaged are they? I would bet very. Because there are no signs.