Only 16% of American approve of the way our Congress is conducting business. Isn’t that just sad?
But, do you know what’s even more sad? More than 16% of them will be re-elected to their office next year. Because, and I’m guilty of this myself, we always think that it’s someone else. Congress is broken. And to fix it, we must clean house.
American perceptions of Congress work like some parents and their behavior towards their children. “Why are kids so bad?” they will ask. But then they always say, “well, not my kid.”
Even though Americans disapprove of Congress in general, they will still vote for their local incumbent Representative. So things essentially stay the same. Only when there is a retirement, death or scandal can a long-serving politician be given the boot. And that’s not the way it should be— there should be term limits.
But there aren’t. So we have to create them ourselves, as an electorate. Let’s start now. In 2014, vote for someone new. Do not re-elect your incumbent. Unless, of course, the only other option is a complete nutjob. Then you have no choice. It is the responsibility of the challenging party to run a respectable candidate. If they can’t do that, then there is no hope.
If we are successful in electing a whole new bunch of people to Congress, change will come. Business will get done. Things will get accomplished. But these new folks can only serve for 10 years. Go ahead— re-elect them 4 times. That will give them 10 years in office. Then, no matter what, elect someone new.
My current representative does a nice job. She brings home the bacon for the district, that’s for sure. But she has been in office since 1983. I was born in 1982. I don’t think the Founding Fathers were dreaming of lifelong politicians when they were drafting the Constitution. If I’m asking others to clean house, I have to do it, as well. That’s only fair.
16% approval rating? It’s our very own fault. We are given the chance to change things every two years. Let’s do it.
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