Chamber Insider Blog

Brian’s Corner: Election Fatigue?

Blog Series by Government Affairs Manager Brian Fauls
To view previous posts in this series, click here.

“Always vote on principle, though you may vote alone,
and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.”
– John Quincey Adams

An interesting satirical post popped up on my Facebook feed the other day: “America shouldn’t elect a president this year and instead take a year off to find itself.”  The message is of course a parody of the time honored and sage advice well-meaning friends always gives to one who’s just gotten out of a bad relationship to prevent them from jumping right back into a bad relationship.  I’m sure it was meant to warn us more about the impending bad relationship offered by our two presidential candidates then it was a commentary about the relationship were leaving with our current president (probably).  Either way, it was yet another example of the immense fatigue overtaking America in this election cycle.  

And election fatigue is a bad thing.  It is a bad thing during any election cycle but it may be an especially bad thing in this cycle.  Given all the turmoil in America today, given the very real problems we need to confront and solve – from our anemic economy to our crumbling infrastructure to the disintegration of civil society – the very last thing we can afford to do is tune out and do nothing. 

William E. Simon, 63rd U.S. Secretary of Treasury, once said, “Bad politicians are sent to Washington by good people who don’t vote.”  He was right.  Your vote is your voice, use it.  Look beyond the prejudices, the passions, the errors of opinion, the local interests, and the selfish views – the spin being thrown at you from all sides – and truly educate yourself on who the candidates are, what they stand for, and what they have done. 

America has a lot of soul searching to do to find itself again.  We can start finding ourselves again by electing good people to office.  Even if you absolutely cannot support one of the presidential candidates, please support your state and local candidates.  Decide who best represents your principles, your conscience and your commitment to your community and VOTE for them.  VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE.

Democracy, is an ugly, messy, disheartening form of government.  Winston Churchill called it the worst form of government, except for every other one ever tried.  He was right.   Why, is it so bad, because it requires that very different people with all “their prejudices, their passions, their errors of opinion, their local interests, and their selfish views” (to quote Ben Franklin) and come together, get passed all those flaws in each other and somehow achieve consensus about 1) the problems, and 2) the solutions.  Let’s face it, herding kittens is probably far easier. 

Democracy is messy but it is worth the struggle.

Blog Series by Government Affairs Manager Brian Fauls
To view previous posts in this series, click here.