BILL MASTERSON JR.: Tit-for-tat politics have got to go

2011-02-26T00:00:00Z 2012-01-26T16:20:36Z BILL MASTERSON JR.: Tit-for-tat politics have got to goBy Bill Masterson Jr. nwitimes.com
February 26, 2011 12:00 am  • 

How many of our legislators ran on this platform: "I am going to try and ram my party's agenda down the other party's throat regardless of whether it is good for the state or the country? I promise to not work with the other side, and if I can't get my way I will run off, shirking the responsibilities you elected me to do and effectively shunning all other initiatives regardless of their impact on you or anyone else!"

This tit-for-tat has got to go!

I'm pretty sure that wouldn't be a successful strategy, yet that is what our elected officials do not only in our state but on the national level -- and I'm talking both parties.

The Obama administration swept into power because people got tired of a war run by Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney, who told us only what they thought we needed to know and told us to like it. Two years later, the Democrats were demolished across the nation in statewide elections that sent much of the power back to the Republicans because people were upset about what the Democrats were doing.

Now it has deteriorated to shouting matches in Wisconsin, and our Indiana representatives on the Democratic side are holed up in Illinois. We need a third party called The Common Sense Party.

We teach our kids to not discriminate against color, age and gender, yet we staunchly support bad legislation or kill good legislation just because the introducing party has a D or an R behind its name. Give me a break.

A perfect example is the House Democrats' destruction of House Bill 1574, Republican Rep. Ed Soliday's effort to try and manage the cleanup and maintenance of the Little Calumet River, which has flooded in the past, causing millions of dollars in damage.

Representatives from both sides of the aisle met with The Times to discuss the bill. Yes, it was introduced by an R, but it also was co-sponsored by a D and had the support of the majority of all the R's and D's in Northwest Indiana. This was a small fee that would not have any impact on anyone else in the state and would help ensure the flooding that happened in 2008 doesn't happen again. Both sides told me they supported each other on this because it was the "right thing to do." Well, I guess the right thing to do for other D's and R's is to only support their party's bills and kill the opposition's regardless of the impact it has on the population. That's shameful.

The Republicans were surprised by the Democrats' reaction to the right-to-work legislation. I don't get it. If you back someone into a corner with no way out, what do you expect them to do? You can't expect a person to just take a beating without putting up a fight.

Now to the Democrats. While I appreciate you taking a stand on a particular item that might be nonnegotiable, that can't be the case on everything. The damage being done by you not being in the Statehouse, working with other R's and D's, is not acceptable and is not what we elected and are paying you to do. Please go back to work and ignore the R's and D's behind the names. It's the right thing to do.

As for the rest of us, what can we do? We can look ourselves in the mirror and and ask, "Are we voting for a representative just because they have an R or a D behind their name?" If that's the case, then we are as much at fault as they are. It's time we vote into office people who are committed to working for what is the best solution for all. It's the right thing to do.

Bill Masterson Jr. is publisher of The Times Media Co.

Copyright 2014 nwitimes.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Follow The Times

Featured Businesses

Submit a Letter to Editor

We welcome letters from readers on any issue of public interest, and make every effort to publish as many as we can and in a timely manner. The Times will publish only one letter a month from a writer, and be sure to include your name, address and a telephone number for verification. Letters should be 150 words or less. They will be edited.

Letters may be submitted:
  • Via our submission form.
  • Via e-mail.
  • Via fax: (219) 933-3249 or (219) 465-7298
  • Via mail or by hand to our offices:
    • 601 45th Ave., Munster, IN 46321
    • 2080 N. Main St., Crown Point, IN 46307
    • 1111 Glendale Blvd., Valparaiso, IN 46383
    • 3410 Delta Dr., Portage, IN 46368
    • Please mark envelopes with "Attn: Letters"

Questions?

Email Editorial Page Editor Doug Ross or call (219) 548-4360 or (219) 933-3357

Poll

Loading…

Should struggling small school districts merge with their neighbors?

View Results