The Swarm

Mix it up with The Bee's editorial board.

October 28, 2010
Barbara Boxer bobs, weaves and ducks questions

From Campaigns 101: When you're ahead in the polls, do not engage in any talk that might conceivably trip you up.

Barbara Boxer certainly has studied campaigns during her 28 years in Congress, and long ago learned how to duck a question.

Today, Boxer made a quick stop at and an even quicker exit from a start-up, Clean Energy Systems, in Rancho Cordova. There, she touted clean energy and made-in-America jobs, and took swipes at her opponent, Republican Carly Fiorina.

Boxer had opened her comments by saying how busy she was, and had to dash to the airport, but assured the gathering that she would answer a few questions from reporters about politics.

Sure enough, she completed her remarks, and said if reporters have any political questions, "I'm happy to take them at this time."

Funny thing, though, she didn't pause or look out into the audience. If she had, she might have seen a hand raised, mine. Instead, she seamlessly introduced the next speaker, Obama Administration Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, and skittered off to a waiting vehicle so she could zip to the next stop.

If she had deigned to take a question, some wag might have asked: "Given your stated stand in favor of jobs and economy, why is the U.S. Chamber of Commerce spending millions to defeat you."

But Boxer long ago learned how to campaign when polls suggest she might eek out a victory.

About Comments

Reader comments on are the opinions of the writer, not The Sacramento Bee. If you see an objectionable comment, click the "report abuse" button below it. We will delete comments containing inappropriate links, obscenities, hate speech, and personal attacks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. See more about comments here.

What You Should Know About Comments on is happy to provide a forum for reader interaction, discussion, feedback and reaction to our stories. However, we reserve the right to delete inappropriate comments or ban users who can't play nice. (See our full terms of service here.)

Here are some rules of the road:

• Keep your comments civil. Don't insult one another or the subjects of our articles. If you think a comment violates our guidelines click the "report abuse" button to notify the moderators. Responding to the comment will only encourage bad behavior.

• Don't use profanities, vulgarities or hate speech. This is a general interest news site. Sometimes, there are children present. Don't say anything in a way you wouldn't want your own child to hear.

• Do not attack other users; focus your comments on issues, not individuals.

• Stay on topic. Only post comments relevant to the article at hand. If you want to discuss an issue with a specific user, click on his profile name and send him a direct message.

• Do not copy and paste outside material into the comment box.

• Don't repeat the same comment over and over. We heard you the first time.

• Do not use the commenting system for advertising. That's spam and it isn't allowed.

• Don't use all capital letters. That's akin to yelling and not appreciated by the audience.

You should also know that The Sacramento Bee does not screen comments before they are posted. You are more likely to see inappropriate comments before our staff does, so we ask that you click the "report abuse" button to submit those comments for moderator review. You also may notify us via email at Note the headline on which the comment is made and tell us the profile name of the user who made the comment. Remember, comment moderation is subjective. You may find some material objectionable that we won't and vice versa.

If you submit a comment, the user name of your account will appear along with it. Users cannot remove their own comments once they have submitted them, but you may ask our staff to retract one of your comments by sending an email to Again, make sure you note the headline on which the comment is made and tell us your profile name.

hide comments

On October 14, The Sacramento Bee will temporarily remove commenting from While we design the upgrade, we encourage you to tell us what you like and don't like about commenting on and other websites. We've heard from hundreds of you already and we're listening. Please continue to add your thoughts and questions here. We also encourage you to write Letters to the Editor on this and other topics.

About The Swarm

The Swarm is written by members of The Sacramento Bee's editorial board. They meet daily and are separate from the newsroom. Views included here are those of individual writers, and do not necessarily reflect those of a majority of the board or the positions expressed in The Bee's editorials.

October 2013

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
    1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30 31    

Stuart Leavenworth on Twitter

Follow "SacBeeEditBoard" on Twitter