America’s elected political system needs a clean-up from top to bottom. And it has for most of the last 30 years.
As a nation, we’ve allowed that system to be perverted by some of those winning seats in Congress and, nearly every legislature in the country. Some are really mentally unqualified or dishonest who will do or say anything to keep their offices. But, IMHO, things have gone too far. Way, way too far.
Last month, when the new Congress was sworn in, one of that number had twice approved the idea of murdering House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Yep, murder! She’s a Qanon practitioner who believes, among other crackpot, groundless and dangerous things that Hillary Clinton is guilty of infanticide and Trump will eventually “rule the world.” Also, Jews are operating a space laser. Now, she’s legally making decisions regarding your taxes, your nation’s military, the safety of your food and a myriad of things directly affecting you!
She’s not alone. Some 40 other members of Congress are cohorts or supporters of Qanon, Antifa, white supremacy, Stop the Steal or similar nutcase B.S. Either as active participants, believers or supporters. Here, in Arizona, we’ve got a whole GOP family actively trying to recall another family member who’s been elected - and re-elected - to Congress several times. They say he’s crazy and, at times, dangerous. Yes, he is.
There are also state legislatures with some of these “dangerous” folk among their number. Again, here, the state Republican Party has censured - yes, loudly censured - our governor, former U.S. Senator Jeff Flake and Cindy McCain. All card-carrying Republicans for years and years. Yes, that Cindy McCain! Called ‘em all “anti-Trumpers” and booted ‘em out.
From city councils and county commissions to the halls of Congress, there are distinctly unqualified people making decisions about your health care, your taxes, water quality, public safety and more. They’ve weaseled in by running in uncontested districts, enjoyed support from state and local political organizations run by sympathizers or were appointed to fill vacancies for one reason or another. Like our former Senator, Martha McSally. Appointed. Booted out.
And then, you’ve got this: U.S. Senate “Republicans” more concerned with “job security” than living up to the oaths they’ve taken. Not once but twice. Senators took an oath of office AND an oath as jurors in the cases of one Donald J. Trump. Two oaths - “under God!” And twice, they’ve refused - absolutely refused - to be guided by the evidence as they swore to do. I’ve seen murderers convicted on far less evidence than that implicating Trump.
Of the 50, only five voted to try the case. The other 45 said “no.” Even after two oaths to be “impartial” in judgement and to be guided “solely by the evidence.” Evidence that’s been broadcast daily since January 6th . And they’ve seen it. Many, many times. But, it’s “job security” and C-Y-A!
Aside from the dangerous nutcases making laws directly affecting our lives, we’ve got 45 unethical Senators who’ve repeatedly backed away from their responsibilities, lied under oath and despoiled the reputation of the U.S. Senate. Same goes for about another 130 Republicans in the House. Took the oaths knowing, in advance, they were going to break that sworn trust. To God. And to you!
I’ve been around politics a long, long time. I’ve seen some crackpots and more than a few unqualified folks in office. But, our system has become so completely out-of-whack with too many folks concerned only with their own welfare. They’ve become believers in lies and damned lies while in positions of high responsibility. They’ve become people who’ll lie - under oath - rather than do their jobs “faithfully” as those oaths require.
One way to flush the system - at home and across the country - is to not let any race on a ballot go uncontested. In Idaho, Utah and Arizona, it’s been a lack of Democrats stepping up. I’m certain in other states, it’s been a lack of qualified Republicans. No matter the party, if there’s an open space on the ballot, fill it! Case in point - the Qanon lady got to Congress because no one else would run in the general election in her state.
Another thing local and state parties can do is carefully vet candidates ahead of time, just like the corporate world. There are a lot of people in Congress right now who couldn’t pass the hiring process at a major company. Make certain your candidate - for any office - is a person you’d feel comfortable with making decisions regarding you.
I doubt many of us could take a good look at our current Congress and feel we’re being well-served. Especially the Senate.
Finally, the political process starts at home. It’s a “ground up” reality. Can’t be done “top down.” We didn’t send them to the banks of the Potomac with promises of “job security.”
We’re in dangerous waters. We’ve got members of Congress who actually helped January rioters with access and even with direct participation.
You O.K. with that?