JWT’s Journal: Why We Keep Electing the Same Politicians
by John Wayne Tucker
In the previous article, we discussed how politicians want to make everything good on their watch; therefore, they are to the point of borrowing our lifestyle from other countries and printing money at unprecedented levels.
Why do we keep electing politicians who behave this way? There are many answers to that question. First, it goes back to the complacency of the people. Many assume that the incumbent is the natural choice for election. After all, he already has the job; therefore, he must have experience. He made contacts and connections which allow him to be able to carry out the job effectively. Of course, what the average voter does not realize is that those connections and contacts are often a developed relationship of backroom deals and agreements of mutual support regardless of the consequences. While this kind of collaboration to accomplish goals can be a good thing, it stops being a good thing when it means that the politician has to sacrifice his values to accomplish the compromise.
Another issue of which most people are unaware is that the politician has obligations for favors delivered. He owes the party, the other politicians, the people who provide massive amounts of money and support to his election, and more. People do not realize that the politician, under the current system, must start at a very low level and prove that he is willing to do whatever the party wants before they will move him to the next level. By the time the politician gets to the federal level, he knows that he owes his entire political career to the party and to many others along the way. Therefore, doing what is right is not the goal or main option of a politician who has come up through the ranks.
Frankly, we are absolutely slaves to the two party system. Both parties operate the same way and both parties make the rules. Therefore, it is virtually impossible for any third party to develop or compete effectively. It is also virtually impossible for any independent or any non-politician to be able to win an election. For example, the NRSC has said they would not support the official candidate of New Hampshire, Christine O'Donnell, because she was not their chosen candidate. They have backed down since saying that due to public pressure, but are not willing to give her full monetary support. The truth is that the party wants to select the candidate and refuses to support any candidate that has not come up through the ranks and is obligated to obeying the party.
The parties used to select their candidates via a caucus (a small group of party leaders). The people decided they did not like that and wanted more input into the process of selecting the candidate. Therefore, the primary was invented. In a primary, anyone can run for office and the people get to select the candidate. However, many people have found it too burdensome to decide the issues and actually go to the polls to vote in the primary. They would rather wait until the actual election and vote for whoever other people have selected. They simply want to vote for the party’s candidate. That means that the party is now free to promote their candidate in the primary and get them elected. The consequence is that voters get another “good ole boy” politician for a choice regardless of the party for which you decide to vote.
In reality, the people have a tendency to vote for the person who collects the most money during the primary process. Following the money is something that, on the surface, seems like a good idea. After all, if this person can raise big money, they have a better chance of winning the election, right? But have you thought about what this means?
When I ran for Congress, I went to D.C. to try to build support from various conservative and religious groups. I visited the Republican National Congressional Committee and was more than a little surprised when they did not ask me about my beliefs, how long I have been a Republican, what my commitment was or any other seemingly pertinent question. The only thing they wanted to know was, “how much money can you raise?”
Consider the money issue: the person who raises massive amounts of money is someone who gets support from other people with huge amounts of money (companies, lawyers, etc.). These are people who expect something for their investment. These benefactors are not giving huge amounts of money because they like the candidate; they are buying something. They are buying a commodity. Yes, these people not only owe their success to the party, but also to financial backers, so where are the candidate’s loyalties? When I ran for Congress, companies who collect money for candidates would not even answer my calls or e-mails. Later, when significant supporters of mine (who knew these people personally) asked these corporate fundraisers about me, they claimed they never got the ten voicemail messages or e-mail messages. Why did this happen? It happened because I was not the party’s choice. So, the likelihood of selecting a non-politician, an independent thinker, or someone who is a political outsider is remote.
It seems that ‘We the People’ are stuck with the party choices and there is little likelihood that we are going to be able to change things unless we begin to take real responsibility for controlling the power of government or putting more control in the hands of the people. We will continue to elect the same kind of politicians until we can no longer sustain ourselves as a nation unless we change the way we get involved in the political process.
John Wayne Tucker
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