If anyone doubted that there was a deep well of humanity inside the flinty-eyed vote-counter, today’s announcement removed all doubt.
House Speaker Shap Smith has left the gubernatorial race, citing his wife Melissa Volansky’s continuing battle with breast cancer. He chose family over ambition, despite Volansky herself urging him to stay in the race.
His announcement was concise, graceful, heartfelt, and noble. It speaks volumes about Shap’s character and priorities, and it makes me hope that he can return to politics someday.
For now, no. He rejected any talk of re-entering the race even if circumstances permit, and he announced he will not seek re-election to the House next year. And if this does turn out to be his last act in politics, then (a) it’s one hell of an exit, and (b) Vermont will be the poorer for it.
And now, since this is a political blog, we don the green eyeshade and consider the political impact.
To put it bluntly, Sue Minter may have just won the Democratic nomination.