Voter remorse comes from being double crossed. You vote for someone you think represents your views and you get blindsided. It doesn't happen often but it sure stings when it does. And, it can happen at all levels of government.
Some 30 East County voters at random were asked about election regrets. Only one in three said they were sorry about a past vote. Those with remorse talked about the presidency, state government and local politics. It all added up to this. Be careful who you vote for. He or she might win.
Two locals cited Arnold Swarzenegger. Oakley's Cindy Vandermeulen said this. "I voted for the Terminator and got a Kindergarten Cop. I was taken in by the actor. It took me a year to realize who he was. It wasn't so much what he did. It was more what he didn't do. I've been disappointed with others but never sorry about my vote. Arnold was different."
Eric Tuitasi of Antioch feels the same. "Swarzenegger was my idol. I watched all his movies. I was sure he would make a big difference as governor of California," he said. "Boy, was I wrong. I soon found out he stood for things I didn't agree with. Voting for him was my big time disappointment."
Iraq vet Vernon Taylor, of Oakley pins the tail on Bill Clinton as his donkey. "Bill Clinton made me understand that all politicians are crooked and they all have skeletons in their closets. It was the sex scandal and all his lies," he said. "It had a profound effect on me. I
Brentwood barber Jim Allen said he's sorry he voted for Richard Nixon's second term. "I was pleased with his first term in office and was soured by his later using the presidency as an opportunity to grant payback favors for political support. Watergate only confirmed what was happening," he said. "Nixon made me a skeptic."
Dennis Addison of Brentwood's bad choice was George W. Bush. "I felt he was out of touch with reality, doing things he shouldn't be doing," he said. "The Iraq War was based completely on falsehoods. Voting for him was more than disappointing. I'm more careful now."
Oakley's Carla Pinheiro is sorry she voted for Barack Obama. "I've come to think he's more concerned with his image and the media than in getting things done," she said. "He compromised too much on health care and it ended up watered down with too many bad things in it." Then she added, "I'm still not sure, but given the choice I may vote for him again."
Local mayors took it on the chin from two other voters. Donna Just is sorry about her Brentwood mayoral vote. "We elected someone who overbuilt and overspent," she said. "My regrets began right after the election."
Wendy Simpson of Pittsburg takes pot shots at her mayor. "He totally misled us. He's been bad on school issues and law enforcement," she said. "In his first year in office we learned that a lot of his promises were empty."
"I'm beginning to wonder if we're just setups for the politicos."
Contact Ed Arnow at BrentwoodBuzz@aol.com.