Since last Monday’s New York gubernatorial debate, I’ve been disappointed to read that a few reporters said I was using “cheat sheets” during the debate. The New York Post said my remarks were “ghostwritten.” Former Mayor Ed Koch said my lines were written by my campaign advisor, “Roger What’s-his-name.” Sadly, these comments are both sexist and untrue.
For the record, Newsday set the rules for the debate, and we were not allowed to bring anything on stage — no notes, no pens, no paper, nothing. Once on stage, each candidate was given two pens and a pad of paper.
For most questions, I was the sixth to answer — that was the unluckiness of the draw, which determined my place on stage. I had roughly seven minutes before I had to answer, so that gave me plenty of time to organize my thoughts and write them down so I answered concisely. As you can see in the picture below, out of seven candidates, four had pads of paper on their lap, including Attorney General Andrew Cuomo.
Unlike Sarah Palin, I went on the stage with nothing written on my hand — and no notes. I merely wrote down my thoughts when the candidates were talking because, quite frankly, this was my first time speaking in front of a large audience and I was quite nervous.
I wanted to make sure I articulated my issues in an informative way — with a bit of humor because our state is a comedy of errors being orchestrated by our elected officials. The Libertarian Party candidate in the race is not a libertarian — he’s a liberal Republican who favors higher gas taxes — so I knew I would be the only real proponent of personal and economic freedom, the only genuine libertarian on the platform.
Like the other minor party candidates on stage, we all earned the right to participate in the debate. Getting on the ballot in New York is no easy task. It requires a minimum of 15,000 signatures gathered in a 30-day time span in over 15 congressional districts. This is a difficult and enormously time-consuming process.
Initially my campaign was met with skepticism and talk of it being a publicity stunt. My answer to that continues to be that if I wanted publicity, I’d release my black book. That would generate far more press then a political run. However, I will never do that as it’s just not part of my code of ethics to make more victims out of a victimless act. I had hoped that once we proved that this was a serious campaign by getting on the ballot, the press would be more receptive to my candidacy.
To downplay my performance by saying I used “cheat sheets” is just ridiculous. Can I not be blonde and smart? Can I not read the paper and have my own opinions on the issues? Perhaps my jokes were just too good.
I understand that being blonde, and a former madam, lends itself to a certain stereotype, and I constantly fight to dispel such misperceptions. It would probably be easier to just buy a $6.00 bottle of hair dye and go dark, which would immediately increase my IQ level. However, I refuse to give in to such stereotypes and change myself when it’s what I’m saying that’s important — not how I look.
Perhaps I should have just written notes on my hand. Or put them in my bra and pulled them out on stage. Now that would have generated press coverage.
Kristin Davis filed 22,000 valid voter signatures to become the first woman in New York history to run for governor on the general election ballot. Davis is a libertarian running on a platform of personal and economic freedom. Her Anti-Prohibition platform includes ending the prohibition on marijuana, ending the prohibition on gay marriage, ending the prohibition on casino gambling and decriminalizing prostitution. To learn more about Kristin Davis and her campaign, go to: www.KristinDavis2010.com.