In the WND article “Congress members jumping onto ‘pink slips’ campaign,” Rep. Todd Akin, R-Mo., is quoted as saying, “The pink slip campaign serves as a good reminder of the unavoidable fact that every member of Congress answers to their constituents and that they ignore their voices at their own peril.”
In fact, that’s not true. The idea that members of Congress answer to their constituents is a myth in modern America.
Most congressmen, in fact most politicians, are lawyers. Lawyers are hired guns – they represent whoever pays them. Lawyers are taught to represent their clients fully, regardless of their own opinions.
So, who’s paying the politicians? Their campaign contributors! And the politicians are faithfully representing their contributors!
So, what can we do about it? Will pink slips really work?
Well, a little bit – at least enough to get them to talk more about representing their constituents, but at the risk of distancing their contributors.
So, what’s the answer?
How about changing the ones who hire them? How about changing their contributors? Since they represent whoever pays them, wouldn’t that work?
Yes! But how can we do that when most of us don’t have enough money to make any politician take notice?
Ah, but you say, “We’ve had campaign-finance reform before.”
But no one, to my knowledge, has ever mentioned the only kind of reform that would encourage politicians to really represent their constituents. Why nobody’s thought of it before I don’t know. But maybe someone has, and the politicians are so against it, it never gets any air time.
Here it is:
Require that ALL campaign contributions come ONLY from voters who are registered to vote in a precinct that will have the race that pertains to that campaign on its ballot.
All campaign contributions, including “hard money,” “soft money,” goods and services that are contributed in any way to any campaign, must come from – guess who? – the constituents! Otherwise, the constituents won’t be represented!
“All campaign contributions” would also apply to ballot measures. Let the people who live in an area determine their own laws without outside special interests trying to persuade them.
Having “the race that pertains to that campaign” on the ballot would allow contributions to write-in candidates.
Only people should contribute to a campaign. No companies, unions or “political action committees” should ever be allowed to contribute to any campaign! The organization’s leadership can’t prove that everyone who’s contributed to the organization approves of the campaign to which the organization’s leadership wants to contribute. (I’m sure you can think of current news articles that indicate that.)
Those who are serious enough about a campaign to want to contribute to it should at least be serious enough to register to vote! If they’ve lost the right to vote (or never had it in the first place), they have no business trying to influence any election!
Contributors should contribute to their own candidates. Even if they are registered to vote, they shouldn’t be able to influence candidates running for offices that aren’t supposed to represent the contributors.
This would eliminate some senators who get most of their campaign contributions from out of state. I’ve even heard of politicians getting contributions from China of all places! Do we really want China deciding how our country is run?
Now, I realize that changing campaign-finance law in any significant way is really tough. The politicians won’t vote for it because this change would remove major sources of contributions from many of them. In fact, if this change had been enacted before the 2008 elections, most of the currently elected officials wouldn’t have even been on the ballot.
To make a change like this, we’ll probably have to circulate a petition to put an initiative measure on the ballot (or however it’s done in your state).