Disgusted with the ever-present negative ads, predictable partisan unoriginality, well-polished pandering and meaninglessness of much of the political discourse, apathy besets voters leading up to the election âÄî who cynically march into the voting booth on Election Day to fulfill their duty to check off the lesser of two evils. Tragically, the very political archetypes for which citizens clamor routinely receive little support. But there is one candidate out there who threatens to break that mold this year: the Independence PartyâÄôs nominee âÄî and one of its founders âÄî for U.S. Senate, Dean Barkley. The Barkley campaign strives to be âÄúissues-basedâÄù and runs only positive ads. Among other principled ascetics vowed by Barkley is a refusal to pander. He countered FrankenâÄôs $5,000 college student tax credit proposal with discipline: âÄúIâÄôm not going to âÄ¦ promise tax credits and new programs because weâÄôre basically $11 trillion in debt.âÄù Moreover, Barkley would contribute a necessary swing vote to a Senate hindering on a Democratic takeover. Checks and balances absent within governmentâÄôs branches is as dangerous of a concept as checks and balances absent between governmentâÄôs branches. Barkley stresses ethics reform and proposes criminalizing campaign contributions to congressional leaders serving on related committees. His realization that the Bush administration misled the nation on the war in Iraq and it should shift focuses to Afghanistan is as precise as his view that the equal protections clause applies to everyone, regardless of their sexual orientation. Barkley, furthermore, correctly argues drug use wonâÄôt be quelled by waging a war and that because 18 year olds can die in war and vote, they should certainly be able to consume alcohol. We urge readers to consider sending a refreshing and independent voice to a chamber utterly lacking those qualities.