I’m going to vote, DO NOT THINK I AM NOT, but I have become very disgruntled with American politics. I know my conservative friends think Obama took the country down the crapper but I feel like the liberal supported mandate got not traction in 2008 and I started looking into how he ended up getting thwarted at every turn and over the last 8 years I’ve decided shit never gets done in our Congress. We are making history in how unproductive we are. For anyone who understands the 3 branches of government you know that the President doesn’t really have as much power to “change” things as you may think, but especially if you have a Congress that love obstructionism (yes, from both sides) and is terrifying of angering their base.
SO. The only way I’m ever going to actually get excited about a Presidential election again is if we ever find a way to get to these three problems which cause HUGE issues ON ALL SIDES. Seriously. If I could focus on issues that might actually have an impact on the extremism that is guiding our politics, these are the issues I would choose. Until then? I will be an apathetic voter. I’ll do my part, I’ll listen, I’ll research – but I’ll know these three things continue to distort our entire system.
Gerrymandering and/or the single-rep districts. They both create environments where electable officials pander to the extreme end of their parties, but some debate which is the problem/solution. Is it the district lines themselves (problematic because of gerrymandering) or is it the single-rep system. Would we solve the breeding ground for extreme politics by redrawing district lines or by creating larger districts with multiple representatives? Who knows. Either way people from both sides agree: DISTRICTS ARE THE PROBLEM. They are drawn and represented in such a way that moderates get lost in the shuffle and states of political representation that does not match the split of the popular vote.
Term limits for Congress. Without term limits we create career politicians and with horribly drawn districts (as mentioned above) those career politicians can keep their jobs indefinitely if they spend their time pandering to the extreme ends of their political party.
Citizens United. One of the few Supreme Court rulings that Americans on both side agree has had a terrible impact. Unregulated campaign finance in all of these extreme districts with lifelong politicians pandering to extreme voters seals the deal on our fate in this country.
4 thoughts on “Voter Apathy”
Totally agree with all three points here Kim. Personally think that the Senate should have no more than 2 terms. The House side spends 2 years of there terms prepping for another term. Maybe extend there term limits to a one time 6 year term. Congress was never intended by our forefathers to be the home of the career politician. The average citizen was supposed to be able to run for office and be able to mandate change. So many good people that could really bring about change are pushed away from serving the country because of these 3 points.
I agree with you on apathy (but voting anyhow) and was actually planning to ask a political question on your “next” political post (this one): How do you stay sane and rational sounding when folks around you extol the virtues of Trump? I just have to walk away to avoid having my head explode.
Whether you are Republican or Democrat or Martian, Trump is long on bluster and short on actual solutions. He doesn’t demonstrate any capacity for compromise or negotiation. He also appears to believe that the powers of the President are those of a dictator.
Yeah, I’m with you. I especially don’t think we’ll see real change in terms of third parties becoming successful at the national level until we see major campaign finance reform. It’s disheartening how polarizing our political scene has become. And as someone in the military and married to another serviceman, don’t even get me started on the budget situation and continuing resolutions. It is so frustrating that Congress can’t make their MANDATED budget deadlines.
Lifelong politicians have their pros and cons. The pro: they rise in seniority such that they gain prime seats on various subcommittees and can obtain additional funds (tax revenue) for their prospective district……….but that is also a con. In addition they end up get benefits for life, whether they do actual work or not. ( I’ll refrain my from spewing my diatribe on your blog.)