As I spend time this morning reading and watching the latest punditry regarding the 2012 race for the GOP nomination, it really is amazing how the entire race has seemingly been orchestrated and preordained by political operatives with deep pockets and deep ties to Washington, DC power. I doubt the Founding Fathers could have even imagined how our system of selecting our leaders has devolved into this messy corrupted system where political power and money seem to trump ideas and solutions. Champions of conservative governance are routinely dismissed by the elites in power. All of the GOP contenders in the 2012 race have used the right rhetoric to appeal to conservative voters, but the mainstream media has done a lousy job of parsing those words and comparing the rhetoric to voting records and actual performance in office. The endless supply of attack ads and incessant yapping by talking-heads in this election cycle have steered the behavior of voters in a way that is wholly undemocratic. What a shame that so few vote in this country, and that a minority of those who actually vote know the positions of the candidates who they support. And, with so many conflicting messages and stories floating around, it is no wonder voters are disillusioned with the process. Turnout has been low during this 2012 GOP nomination battle .. that can't be because folks are happy with Obama's performance as president, so it must be because they are feeling disenfranchised by the whole system. I am one of those. The process has been hijacked...will we rise up to reclaim it?
The government in America was established on the principle that power in government is derived from the consent of the governed. That the people in this country hold the power.. that individuals are sovereign. We have the duty to select leaders to represent us who will remember where their power comes from. We have the duty to vote for candidates that represent our values and views, who will design, draft, pass, and sign legislation that is acceptable to us, who will uphold the principles of this nation as laid out in our Declaration of Independence and Constitution, who are not beholden to Washington, DC power-brokers, but are beholden to the people of this country. Can we honestly say that this is the reality in America? Is our system of choosing leaders even remotely similar to that which was designed for us by our Founders? I am not seeing it.
The only solution to the problem is for average Americans to rise up and take back government in this country. The halls of power in Washington, DC are filled with millionaire politicians who have spent their entire adult life feeding at the trough of government money and power. Our system of politics is designed to keep incumbents in office while thwarting the advances of those who would challenge the status quo. Occasionally a new champion will break through and be elected, but, in short order, such champions are corrupted by the process and back down from their positions.. or worse, they begin to participate in the corrupt practices they once railed against. There are exceptions, of course, but rarely enough of those to effectively change Washington, DC.
My choice to support Newt Gingrich has been primarily because he is the only political figure in my lifetime who has ever gone into Washington, DC and has actually made transformational change. He wrestled control of the process away from bureaucrats and career politicians and with little help or encouragement from the political establishment, cut government spending, reformed an entitlement program and ushered in a period of great economic growth in this country and all of this while battling Democratic party opposition and a Democratic president. Newt's opponents are now using his time working in and around Washington, DC against him, but Newt was never consumed by Washington, DC. Newt fought against the establishment in both parties when he worked there. Newt is the exception to the rule. He has spent most of his career in and around politics, but he has also spent his entire career as a warrior fighting the ruling elite in this country. I can think of no candidate better qualified to address the biggest crisis in American government today: the lack of representative government in Washington, DC.