OK, this is the first one with parties... the candidates:
* Jackie Colon (Republican)I could not find a website for Colon. Ilecki's is minimal and doesn't speak much about the issues, but it is there.
* Margarita Ilecki (Democrat)
This contest pits Republican Jackie Colon, who is seeking a second term, against Democrat and political novice Margarita Ilecki.I don't really understand. They spend many paragraphs (I excerpted the whole bit about her) slamming her on many fronts. But then say essentially, "Well, she sucks, but we'll still pick her." There is not much information about Ilecki, and she is a novice, but... it sounds like you can't count on Colon for much of anything. I'll take the novice Democrat over the not quite sure what she is doing Republican.
We endorsed Colon four years ago and again recommend her to voters, but this time with reservations. Here's why:
Colon sold herself to voters in 2000 as a moderate Democrat. Then, last year, she pulled the ultimate flip-flop, switching parties and becoming a conservative Republican.
Colon says she did it because of her religious beliefs and opposition to abortion. She also said she felt uncomfortable with the Democratic Party's pro-choice stance. We have the utmost respect for her personal convictions, but her switch raises this question:
Just who is Colon, and what does she really believe in when it comes to the future of Brevard? Often, it's hard to tell.
She failed a major leadership test when -- saying the $4,445 figure was too high -- she voted against impact fees for new homes to help pay for more schools to meet the Florida Constitution's mandate for smaller classroom sizes.
In doing so, she offered no sound solution to a problem that must be immediately addressed. Her choice let down students, parents and teachers who needed her support.
She also backed the county's manatee protection plan while a Democrat, but now, as a Republican, opposes a small funding expansion of the county's Environmentally Endangered Lands program to save our resources from the bulldozer.
As a result, she's against what may be the last chance to preserve the best of what remains of our irreplaceable landscape.
If re-elected, Colon must understand that her job is to make hard decisions for the betterment of Brevard. She can't hide behind half-measures she knows won't work to give herself a safe political out.
Parts of her record suggest she has the experience, thoughtfulness and mettle to reach that point, making us hope she'll live up to the promise she once showed.
Eight years on the Palm Bay City Council gave her excellent insight into the needs of cities. She also spearheaded the first county-city-school summit -- a smart move that can result in better communication and planning among civic leaders.
And we don't question her dedication, care for constituents and involvement in valuable programs, such as working with local churches on youth drug-awareness programs.
Ilecki, a hearing specialist, is a quick study on the issues, but has never held elected office and has been in Brevard only a short time. We hope she seeks a municipal office to gain some experience and stays on the political scene.
But Colon, despite our reservations, is the better-qualified candidate.
She's got no site. And is like already doing it. That's weird.