Monday, July 9, 2012

The political games must stop

By Cal Potter

Now that the recall elections are over, there is a collective sense of relief as we are no longer faced with a barrage of phone calls, media political ads, and the spending of tens of millions of dollars from special interests on political propaganda, mostly insulting our intelligence.

Our post-election hope is that we move forward, and seriously and cooperatively attend to the many problems facing our state and nation.

Democrats need to accept that Gov. Walker won the election, and Republicans accept that, with the loss in the Racine area State Senate race, Democrats now control that House by a one-vote margin.

Thus far it is not evident that the Senate change is being recognized by political partisans on the losing side. First we had a recount after an over 800-vote margin of victory. Now we hear from those same partisan operatives they may use the courts alleging voter fraud, aimed solely at further delaying the change in majority.

Due to the diligence of county and local clerks, and poll workers, voter fraud in Wisconsin is almost non-existent. This constant focus on voter fraud is only designed to achieve partisan objectives, and truly insulting to the local folks who work hard to conduct clean elections.

We are a state and nation divided in our political views, and only cooperation and compromise will bring progress in addressing our economic, educational, environmental, health care, and many other problems.

Rabid partisan politicals, and their special interest buddies, view and treat our system as a game, seemingly for their own entertainment and advancement of their self-interest. They are willing to engage in any activity to advance their exclusive view of the world, or enhance only their economic gain, at the expense of those millions of citizens waiting for their elective government to do what it is supposed to do — represent the best interest of the people.

Partisan games are reflective of the values, ethics, character, and intellect of the perpetrators of those political shenanigans. These game-players show their total disdain and disregard for the people who wish their government, and those they have elected in it, to get down to work, and seriously labor in behalf of the people, and not just for a political party, or the special interests that literally dump millions of dollars into a system they then expect to do their bidding.

Viewing government as a game, or an entity of self-interest, is despicable and needs to stop. Without this change in attitude and behavior by fanatical partisans and big-money special interests, we will not see our system operate as it was intended; a system of, for and by the people.

What a shame that our state and nation is not reaching its full potential because of the behavior of the selfish few. And shame on those who have allowed and continue to allow this perversion of democracy.

Calvin Potter is a member of Common Cause in Wisconsin's State Governing Board and a former State Representative (1975-1991) and State Senator (1991-1998) from Sheboygan Falls.

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