Fall Housekeeping

By on November 6, 2012

After complaining for almost a year that this election has gone on way too long and cost far too much, the day of reckoning is finally here. It should be a simply matter for American to register their choices and tally the votes. Not so simple.

Already we see dirty tricks and sneaky moves by partisan office holders in several states denying legitimate voters the right to cast their ballot. Here in Pennsylvania the state has seen fit to run last minute TV ads reminding voters of what they will be required to provide as ID when they vote in future elections. Why would anyone do this now, except as an effort to confuse?

In Florida, long lines of early voters are being shut out of the polls by a governor whose performance  in office has bordered  on the abusive. Why would a decent person use his public trust to engage in unethical chicanery? It smacks of Richard Nixon. Similar shenanigans are afoot in Ohio.

This country must place election reform high on its priority list in the new year. We need a government that functions in the service of its people. Right now we have too many politicians who seem to feel that elected office is primarily an avenue to enrich themselves personally and entrench themselves in office via gerry-mandering or dirty tricks.

Only the electorate can disabuse them of this dark delusion. If we as voters do not deal forcibly with offenders, we are complicit in the degradation of our own system of government. California has devised an independent way of redrawing districts after a census. Other states need to consider it. The country disposed of Tricky Dick and survived. We can do it again.

Throughout our history we have had good public servants, bad public servants and corrupt public servants. Demanding that elected officials first  serve the interests of those who elect them is an on-going responsibility of voters. The battle against sleaze never ends. Keeping our house in order is the eternal job of very American.


Tom Godfrey

About Tom Godfrey

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