According to RepresentUS, a grass-root anti-corruption organization, we Americans are witnessing a total political system failure regardless of who is in charge of our government. We, the disillusioned, see the government not working for us but working for billionaires and giant corporations. What is wrong? Can we build a movement that works for us and restores our faith in the “American Dream?” Presently, things that we really care about have, statistically, a zero percent chance of passing in Congress and becoming law. Frustrated, we Americans are leaving the major parties in droves and many are registering as politically “independent.” How can we fix it? What causes congressional leaders to ignore us? Consider this:
• Politicians spend 70% of their time fundraising. They sit and call rich donors to secure re-election.
• Only 14% of all voting districts in the U.S. are competitive because of gerrymandering.
• Lobbyists write our laws.
• We waste millions of dollars on fraud and abuse each year, and we the people have zero influence over our leaders. No wonder people become discouraged to vote.
• Children are living in poverty.
• Our health care system is the most expensive in the world.
• We have more people in prison than China and Russia combined.
• Jobs keep leaving the country.
• We are not doing enough in fighting global warming, keeping water and the air clean for future generations of children.
How can we fix the broken system and regain the power of the people? Many congressional scholars agree that a law is needed to stop political bribery and fix our broken elections.
We must get it away from the corrupt establishments and back to the people. This can be done by:
• Ending gerrymandering.
• Automatic voter registration.
• Implementing ranked choice voting (like now done by the state of Alaska).
• Overhauling lobbying ethics laws to close the revolving doors so politicians can’t be bribed with job offers.
• Transparent political contributions showing who is trying to bribe.
• Voter tax vouchers of $50 or $100, which give politicians money from constituents rather than wealthy donors. We the people can then again get the influence over our elected leaders.
Enter the “American Corruption Act” — 87% of Americans are for it, but passing it is like asking the fox to put a lock on the henhouse. So, we need to go around Congress by first passing anti-corruption acts in states all across America. Federal law then changes. This is the winning political strategy, to actively build the movement in all states through voter political involvement. If you do nothing, nothing changes, so tweet, donate, phone-bank, petition, write letters to your local paper and knock on doors. Be active! Your voice matters!
Former Santa Clarita resident
Wilmington, North Carolina