Stuck between a rock and a hard place is about the only way I can describe my plans for the upcoming Illinois Primary. There is no doubt in my mind that President Barack has failed in his first term, although that hasn't exactly been all his fault either. Republicans are just as much to blame for the dismal state of American Politics as the Democrats are. Political discourse is nearly non-existent and the prospects of improvement anytime soon are slim to none.
But even so, President Barack Obama must be the fall guy, after all, the buck always stops in the Oval Office and a second term would not be conducive to anything resembling good governance. Obama could have been a good president, but the fact that he surrounded himself with what he did only contributed to his many failures.
Funny thing, though. At any other time in history President Obama would probably be a one and out president much like Jimmy Carter or Gerald Ford were, but there he is - still very much a contender. All because the Republican Party has kept the incumbent viable due to their own blunders. Is the GOP in disarray? You bet they are. Sadly, I have cautioned repeatedly that the GOP was headed towards irrelevancy if they refused to show Americans something more than what they have given.
Tea Party candidates who were lucky enough to ride the wave of discontent in the 2010 Mid-Terms are now looking like they too are in survival mode - and rightly so. In many ways, Speaker of the House John Boehner not only misplayed his hand but was soundly out-maneuvered by a small group of brash "New Republicans." Unfortunately, many of these new Republicans have been met with suspicion and contempt by those who choose to stay away from the extreme fringes of the GOP.
What a mess!
And that isn't good for Independent's, especially those like me who more often than not picks up a Republican Ballot. There just seems to be no room in the party for Moderates or those who just expect our elected leaders to bargain in good faith and compromise when necessary on the lesser important issues. However, the GOP has degraded into a party unwilling to coexist with their Democratic counterparts on nearly every front.
I am not particularly fond of Mitt Romney, but that is not because I don't believe he has the ability to lead the nation. I think he can. But he troubles me. First and foremost is the fact that Mitt Romney was born into privilege and as that goes makes it hard for me to believe that he really understands the common man. And that is despite Romney's wife's declaration that she doesn't even consider herself wealthy or that they could lose everything they have in a heartbeat. Quite frankly I think it would take a catastrophe on the magnitude of a nuclear blast before the Romney's would ever walk the soup line.
Hmm, I guess we can assume that Mrs. Romney doesn't have a clue as to how rich and fortunate she really is.
But here is the real problem with Mitt Romney - his own party would sabotage him should he win the presidency. And no, his Mormon background isn't what bothers his detractors. It is the fact that he understands that compromise and diplomacy are essential to righting the ship. As strange as this may sound - being a Moderate in the Republican Party is to be on the extreme side of their ideology these days.
When it comes to former Senator, Rick Santorum, well he can probably con those on the extreme into believing that he is "one of them" - but should he win he would quickly revert to a political record that would mostly belie that notion. And what can I say about Newt "Good Ole Boy" Gingrich that I haven't already said? I mean here is the ULTIMATE INSIDER running as an outsider? Man talk about the makings of a classic Rod Serling Twilight Zone Episode! And then, of course, is Ron Paul. A Libertarian that should appeal to those who consider themselves ardent Tea Party members, but somehow even he scares many of them away with his babbling rhetoric.
Of course all these men are not what I would describe as being bad men, but, there is something about their inability to galvanize the mainstream GOP and still appealing to the sensibilities of Independent Voters that dumbfounds even the most expert of political pundit. Their mixing of good ideas with the bad isn't exactly a good recipe for success, however I also sense that much of their Hocus Pocus is predicated upon not wanting to stand up and tell the people what they really believe in for fear of angering one faction or the other. Well folks, it just doesn't take long before things get cloudy as to what prospective voters would really be getting from them.
Of the four Republicans candidates, I can say with certainty that Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul would never, ever, get my vote. As for Santorum or Romney, well I would like to see the real candidate stand up. Unfortunately that won't happen because of who their financial backers are. Both will flip-flop on damn near every issue until the people are either thoroughly confused or beaten into submission with the less than truthful soundbites we are all about to be blitzkrieged by.
Even though I intend to vote in the Illinois Primary, I am sorry to say that the GOP cannot count on me to select one of their candidates. Then again neither can President Obama. Instead, I will concern myself with perhaps joining others in spoiling the chances of a few unworthy candidates running for local, state or Congressional office. Illinois is in desperate need of change and that can only happen by trying to change the Status Quo.
Naturally there is also the issue of deciding whether or not we want our local municipalities to determine who our electric supplier is. So, the Electric Aggregation Referendum (if on your ballot) is something that everyone should vote their conscience on. Of course that is just as personal a decision as the other contests, but only you can decide if you trust local government enough to lock you into what may, or may not, be a competitive long term utility rate over what you have now. And if you live in a community like mine, I am sure you have been given very little information or specifics regarding this issue.
And yes - I do have an opinion on that issue. But, like every other electoral decision that needs to be made - those decisions or the choice of ideology must be yours and your alone. My only hope is that people will participate - even if that means that they are compelled to make it a limited ballot.
Besides, referendums are always placed on primary ballots and/or during the mid-terms. Why? Because that raise the odds for those who are hoping to pull a fast one on the unsuspecting. Of course deciding on who will directly represent you, or your district, is of vital importance. And believe me - local, state and congressional elections are much, much more important than who wins the Presidential Primary.
But hey, if you happen to have the chance at ousting a long-serving Demi-Crook, then by all means - do that!
We really do need a changing of the guard right here in Illinois.
Tags: 2012 Election, Election, Electric Aggregation Referendum, GOP, Illinois Primary, Mitt Romney, News and Opinion, Newt Gingrich, Politics, President Barack Obama, Referendums, Republican Presidential Candidates, Republican Presidential Primary, Rick Santorum, Rod Serling, Rod Serling and the Twilight Zone, Ron Paul