Junior Statesman

Yesterday was the Texas primary election. I was intrigued by one of the candidates for U.S. Senate, Sean Hubbard. I’ll bet most of my readers never even heard of him because they’re either Republicans or non-Texans. I tip my hat to him for one main reason: he’s 31 years old and ran for one of the highest offices in our land.

Sure, most of you probably disagree with Hubbard’s views on the issues, and that’s fine. His views aren’t the point today. I like seeing someone my age, barely even legal to hold the office per the Constitution, running for Senate and trying to make a difference. Lots of people my age find politics distasteful, and with good reason. Also, many people my age are very busy with advancing their careers, getting married, raising children, trying to get out of debt, going back to school, buying houses, and other 20- and 30-something activities rather than running for office. Those are all great things, but they mean most of our political leaders in Washington are significantly older than I am. My parents’ generation obviously has much more experience in life, work, family, and other areas, and it includes many good leaders. However, I want to see a broad range of perspectives represented in Washington, and I applaud Hubbard for wanting to provide a fresh voice from my generation.

Hubbard took a lot of heat for his age and lack of political experience. Most of our Senators are middle-aged or old white men, and Hubbard was missing one of the three keys to the job. During the campaign, so many people asked about his age and experience that he developed a canned response that was actually quite convincing, at least to me. But I can see their point. Experience is helpful for any position, especially for U.S. Senator. When the votes were tallied, the voters sent a clear message that Hubbard wasn’t quite ready for the job, putting him in last place. However, he got his name out there, and I suspect and hope that we might see him again on a ballot someday.