Let the candidates speak!

The Idaho Democratic Party leadership has chosen to do away with the time-honored practice of having major candidates speak at the annual Frank Church Banquet, the traditional kickoff to the election year campaign season. Instead, the IDP is asking 2008 U.S. Senate candidate Larry LaRocco and Congressional candidates Larry Grant, Rand Lewis, and Walt Minnick to submit five-minute YouTube-style videos in lieu of live stump speeches at the banquet. As rank-and-file Idaho Democrats, we have nothing against videos - but we believe that even in this video-saturated age, live speeches ought to remain an important part of the Frank Church Banquet. Many people travel hundreds of miles to attend the Frank Church Banquet and hear the candidates for whom they will be devoting countless hours of volunteer time. To forbid live speeches is disrespectful to the candidates, the voters, and the man for whom the banquet is named. We sign this petition in hopes that the Idaho Democratic Party leadership will reverse its decision not to allow live candidate speeches at the 2008 Frank Church Banquet, and in support of preserving the great tradition of political speechmaking even in the video age.

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