The Meaning of Question 1 Passing in Massachusetts [OPINION]
Ballot Question 1 passed with about 75 percent of the vote on Election Day. The voters had plenty of information on the matter due to the deep pockets on both sides.
The ballot question was about how and who can repair a private individual's automobile in the Commonwealth. On the surface, that isn't a very interesting matter and it isn't something that comes up in high-profile political debates in a presidential election year. Who thinks about repairing their car until they are forced to think about it?
In the end, Question 1 was about more than automobiles, and 75 percent of the voters understood the deeper implications of the question. SouthCoast communities like New Bedford, Fall River, Taunton, Fairhaven, Dartmouth, Wareham, Acushnet, and all of Cape Cod knew why they were voting in favor of the question.
The question was about personal freedom and the rejection of regulations that tie the hands of individuals. In this case, the regulations were from the private bureaucracy, but the impact on the public was explained and the public rejected them.
The question was about the importance of entrepreneurship and small businesses. The question's supporters made the case that they were small business owners and they would be hurt if the question didn't pass. The voters sided with local business owners. Groups like the National Federation of Business and the local Chambers of Commerce should take note of this campaign.
The public face of the Yes on Question 1 was Ed Davis, a retired police officer. The opponents of the question played catch up and brought on a lesser-known police officer to pitch for them. The most expensive ballot question in the history of Massachusetts had sophisticated operatives on both sides and both sides agreed with the idea of using a police officer as a trusted messenger. The police unions and the politicians should take note of this campaign.
The question was about the importance of private property and the deep connection most people have with their automobile. Most people don't want to use public transportation, particularly in the era of COVID-19, and they understand owning an affordably repairable car is crucial to their life. The Green New Deal proponents should take notice of this campaign.
Never mind whether people voted for Trump or Biden in Massachusetts. Pay attention to how they voted on Question 1. That question was about how people feel about their personal freedom, small business owners, police officers, bureaucracy, and private property.
Chris McCarthy is the host of The Chris McCarthy Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 10 a.m. to noon. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @Chris_topher_Mc. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.