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The Underlying Basis for Voter "Discontent"

By       Message Dave Lefcourt       (Page 1 of 2 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   No comments

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So what is one to make of the mid term elections held yesterday?

As expected the Republicans regained the majority in the House. The Democrats lost seats in the Senate but will retain the majority.

Some "tea party" backed Republicans won, notably Rand Paul in Kentucky, but significantly "tea party" favorite Christine O'Donnell was soundly beaten in Delaware, her candidacy considered the most extreme (and unqualified) of all the "tea party" backed crowd. In Nevada Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid beat back another "tea party" favorite Sharron Angle and Senator Barbara Boxer handily beat Republican Carly Fiorina in California. Meanwhile Senator Russ Feingold lost his bid for reelection in Wisconsin.

But it certainly wasn't an across the board bloodbath for the Democrats (although Republicans will not agree with that assessment).

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According to exit polls, the most significant response by voters was their "discontent" i.e. with Obama, the deficit, jobs, the economy but also Republican obstructionism over the past two years. So the discontent could be described as widespread but in broad disagreement across party lines.

But to this observer, although there is widespread malcontent among most of the voters (Democrats as well as Republicans) there is no agreement on the underlying problem behind their discontent.

Think about it, discontent across the board, by the extremes on the right and the left as well as the middle but no agreement on the cause of their malcontent.

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Now it may be presumptuous on the part of this writer, but from here there is one issue (though apparently not asked in the exit polls) that cuts across both right and left from "tea party" right to progressive left that is the underlying basis for their discontent and it's the corporate and special interests that have thoroughly corrupted the entire electoral process. These are the interests that bankroll and select the candidates that run for office who are then beholden to those interests who control and determine the agenda to enact the laws and regulations to benefit those interests which act contrary to and against the interests of the people.

Our elections are awash in undisclosed funds thanks primarily to the Supreme Court's decision in the "Citizens United" v/s "FEC" case last January granting corporations the status of people in the Court's misreading of the 1st Amendment's provision on freedom of speech. This decision is drowning out the voice and influence of the people in our electoral process.

The focus of the people across the political spectrum and divide needs to be the overturning of this horrendous decision by the Court which it appears can only be accomplished by amending the Constitution and calling for a Constitutional Convention for that specific purpose.

This is the one issue that left and right can agree on as the basis to restore the voice of the people. Their discontent is all related and interconnected by the loss of their voice in this "supposed" representative democracy of ours.

For the reality will most assuredly become apparent in the next two years. Although Republicans have regained the House majority they will not reduce the deficit. They will not increase jobs without government spending. They will favor extending the Bush era tax cuts, including for the wealthiest, that will only further bloat the deficit that has them so exercised. They will refuse to cut the bloated and unnecessary Defense budget that could seriously reduce the deficit.

In fact stalemate and gridlock is all but assured with House Republicans voicing "no compromise" with the Democrats and Obama.

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Thus the "discontent" of the people will surely grow and not subside over the next two years. Meanwhile the big corporate and special interests will remain entrenched making sure the peoples voices (including the "tea partiers") will remain muted (but of course given lip service [propaganda] by the sycophants in both parties who represent the people in name only but remain beholden to their big financial backers).

Our American democracy is at a crossroads. Unless our electoral process is fundamentally reformed our elections will be essentially meaningless, regardless of the party in power in the White House and in the Congress.

That's the reality we the people of this country have yet to face (and have yet come to grips with).

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