Congress’ approval rating is at an all-time low. Wisconsin has been blowing up regarding the recall election. Citizen’s United has made it easier for big money to influence elections in a big way.
But that’s what it always comes down to in politics, right? Getting elected. Usually we think that the primary focus of a politician is to win their own seat. There is a new era in politics, however, where it’s not just getting elected to your seat that is the primary focus, but instead the presidency means more.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., then issued his fellow Republicans these marching orders: “Our top political priority over the next two years should be to deny President Obama a second term.” from ‘Obama and Congress: Bipartisan Talk Meet Reality’ on NPR
I know most of you are thinking, “yeah whatever blah blah blah politics is politics.” But don’t you see what the underlying message is? That the primary focus is not to pass laws that make our nation better off now, but instead to put that off until they can “have it their way.” It’s so easy then to cast a vote because all you have to ask is, “Does this bill make Obama look good or bad?” and the answer is pretty black or white. It’s much harder to vote for/against a bill based off of whether it’s good for our society.
We should all remember that the grass is always greener on the other side. Let’s say that Romney does become president. Will democrats be willing to work with them? Probably not after the Republicans have been refusing to compromise. In fact, a republican win under this strategy would only convince democrats that it could work for them so then they will become obstructionists. This is a never-ending and dangerous game. And nothing can or will get done.
Politicians need to realize that the Presidency isn’t that goal. That, in fact, they can do good through compromise and doing what they were sent there to do… to legislate, not get someone elected president.