Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Melissa Gilbert's Congressional run

Actress and former President of the Screen Actors Guild Melissa Gilbert is running for Congress is Michigan's 8th District. She moved to Howell - a town in the district - in 2013 after she married her current husband. Her reasons for running can be summarized as, "wanting to help others".

What are Gilbert's chances of winning? The media has described the seat as "solidly Republican" and, to be fair, the seat has been held by that party since 2001. That being said, it's certainly not impossible for Gilbert to emerge victorious: it's a swing area on the presidential level (Clinton x2, Bush x2, Obama, Romney) and its current incumbent was first elected in 2014 with 54.6% of the vote to the Democrats' 42.1%. Before the main election, though, she still needs to pass the primary.

Why am I writing about Gilbert? To the general public she is known for her prominent role as Laura Ingalls Wilder in 1970/80s TV series Little House on the Prairie and for her work with the Screen Actors Guild; however, I saw her in some episodes of the 1990s science fiction show Babylon 5, in which she performed with one of her former husbands, Bruce Boxleitner. I remember being disappointed when that marriage concluded.

All I can do with her run is watch what happens. I'll be sure to post about Gilbert again once she's undergone the primary and - if she succeeds in the former - the main election.

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