Article first published as In Politics, Is Your Voice Actually Heard? on Technorati.
By Patrick McCormick
You care about America. You think of yourself as a good citizen and have strong feelings of association with one political party. You relate to their message. In your heart, you know the changes they want to make are the right changes. You donate money to your party and may even actively campaign; canvass or pick up a sign and wave it at a busy local intersection.
It is important for you to do this; you are a part of the political process. You want to help your party “Save the World”.
Up to this point, we have been discussing your feelings, your beliefs and your stand on the issues, there is another side to the political coin. What does your candidate want? What are his or her beliefs? Where are your candidate’s loyalties? Will they keep their campaign promises to you?
In order to mount a successful political campaign, a candidate must raise huge sums of money for media advertisements. Candidates obtain these sums from large corporations, special interests and even foreign governments. What must a candidate do for this money? It is a fair assumption your candidate promises something that each contributor wants, loyalty on issues important to each donor. To put it simply, campaign contributors want votes.
By the time Election Day arrives, your candidate has made many promises. Not only do they make promises to you, the voter, they make them to their donors as well. Is your candidate honorable? Will he or she represent you as promised? Do promises made to you or the donors ever come into conflict? How will your candidate vote in the event of a conflict; will they represent you or the campaign donor? In the entire political process, how they vote in the event of such conflict is the most important question you can ask.
Ask all you want, our elected officials have passed legislation that allows corporate and special interest donors to keep the amount of their donations for media advertisements secret. You cannot even determine who is giving what to whom. For instance, a foreign government can donate funds to your candidate through a third party organization and you, the voter, cannot obtain that information.
All candidates promise transparency these days. Promises, promises; the minority party recently blocked legislation to make some positive changes in campaign financing with a filibuster. The majority does not seem to be fighting as fervently as they should.
Will the day come when concerned American citizens can obtain accurate information about the sources of funding of their favorite son’s political campaigns? The ability of the voters to verify the integrity of our office holders is at stake. We need to have this information.
It will never happen unless you demand it!
My name is Patrick M McCormick and I have created this blog as a platform for my political views as well as those of select contributors.
I believe that American Politicians have lost sight of their goal: To uphold the Constitution and protect the rights of the people of the United States. They argue and bicker on the floor of their respective houses, positioning themselves for the next election, while they accomplish very little business for the citizens of this country.
Meanwhile our economy is sliding downward. Millions of our precious jobs have have been exported overseas. Our social safety net and other public services are being cut. Our middle class is rapidly disappearing and the numbers of citizens existing below the poverty line is increasing dramatically.
I plan to examine the causes of these terrible changes to our American way of life. Your comments will help us all arrive at some important conclusions.