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President's Ponderings: Legislators Who Fail Us

By Edward Luttrell - President's Ponderings Blog (2/24/11)

  FEBRUARY 26, 2011 --

It has been frustrating reading the headlines and listening to the talking heads about the current situation in Wisconsin. Last time I checked, we elected people to represent us at different levels of government. We do not elect parties to represent us.

The actions of some legislators in Wisconsin in leaving the state to block legislation are not anything new, but it still reeks of partisanship shenanigans. Texas and Oregon have had this same situation in years past and in both cases, those politicians put their party before their duty.

I believe that we elect people to go to our state capitols and fight for their constituents and the State as a whole. Regardless of their party affiliation, we expect them to be there and be engaged in the debate and discussions on the issues of the day and then to cast a thoughtful and considered vote.

It would be a form of insanity to think that those elected officials will always agree, but to run and hide instead of participating in the democratic process is, at the least, dereliction of their duty. There is no crime in losing a vote, nor in failing to sway the opinion of the majority. The crime is in trying to win through absence. The reason for elections is to ensure the will of the people has a voice. When elected officials don’t show up for work, their constituencies are silenced. 

The issues before the elected officials of Wisconsin deserve debate and discussion by all. The voters of Wisconsin do not deserve the spectacle that is currently being played out by those who are ducking their responsibilities by leaving their state.

I would suggest that any elected official who ducks their duty, no longer deserves the support of any voter. After all, if you don’t show up for work in any other job, you get fired.

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