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Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Americans are Suffering With a Preventable Government Shutdown - Jackie Salit Speaks Solutions at Rotary Club of Bangor Maine

Political innovator Jacqueline Salit spoke eloquently about Independents Rising, at today's (Oct 1) Rotary Club of Bangor, Maine lunch meeting. She spoke about how to prevent government gridlock through supporting political innovation and creating open primary elections. Her message was certainly well received, as America is, today, suffering from the consequences of damaging political polarization.

Bangor Rotarian Joe Pickering introduced guest speaker Jackie Salit at Tuesday's luncheon.

What's going on today is like the cliche of Groundhog Day, the movie, except, it's a horror show sequel.

Today is day one of a drastically harmful US government shutdown, creating preventable harm to average middle class Americans. Hard working people are overwhelmingly opposed to this drastic response brought on by a minority within the Republican party who don't happen to like the Obamacare, health care reform law.

There's something terribly wrong with the way government works when a majority of people living in a democracy have no impact on our government.  

Salit says 72 percent of Americans oppose the Republican congress members who keep the US government in shutdown. 

Nevertheless, this amazing cohesion of Americans, who strongly oppose the government's shutdown, aren't able to change the minds of the minority Tea Party ideologues, who won't allow a vote to re-open government, unless certain demands are met. In other words, they want to see a repeal or delay of health care reform. Democrats call this threat "political extortion".

There's a solution to this ugly gridlock. Americans must stop electing ideologues, who are selected to run for office by extremists in partisan politics. Rather, in a democracy, all voters, regardless of political party affiliation,  must have access to primary elections. 

In other words, all voters should be allowed to vote for primary candidates. Open elections would draw in the 40 percent of American voters who do not affiliate with either the Republican or Democratic political parties. Independents Rising would make the selection of moderate candidates possible.

Moreover, taxpayers already pay for elections where many are restricted from voting, unless they're enrolled in a political party. 

Common sense should rule in a democratic government. A majority of voters want to stop this preventable shutdown.  In a democracy, a majority of 72 percent should be an unquestioned mandate. Unfortunately, tragically, the Tea Party has taken control of the Republican party. This likely would never have happened if independent voters had been involved in candidate selections.  

Nevertheless, political change in favor of moderate candidates doesn't appear to be in the horizon, unless Independents Rising goes mainstream. 


If a government shutdown drives political change, then, like bad tasting medicine, it might bring a remedy for damaging political gridlock.  America needs creative political thinking- very soon. Independents Rising should move America beyond a Groundhog Day mentality and, instead, move us into electing political moderates, rather than extremists, into elected positions.

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