[I wrote the following paragraphs as I continue to grapple with exactly what has happened and worry about what’s next. I got as far as I did but then thought ‘blah, blah, blah.’ The writing is accurate but not viscerally connected to the current turmoil. That’s what I want to explore. Posting this now. Next one to follow will be my attempt to somehow harness what it’s like, for me, to live in these strange days.]
An interesting conversation on Twitter reminds me that many people don’t understand the difference between party allegiance, and the importance of leaving that at the door, and the work of governing. Of course, that’s a very blurred line if not almost completely erased.
In the past, representatives and senators spent more time in DC, even socializing together. They got to know each other much better than pols who now fly in on Monday and go home on Friday. The calendars didn’t include such frequent periods marked out weeks at a time for vacation.
I’ve seen a lot of politics throughout the years but, at the same time, there were standards of behavior to reinforce the foundation of our democracy and strengthen our identity as one nation under God. No one aired our political dirty laundry when abroad. During a State of the Union address, it was unthinkable that someone would shout, “Liar!” as the president spoke.
Gone the way of polite social discourse, the separation of getting elected and legislating has all but disappeared. The most egregious example I’ve seen is Mitch McConnell promising he would block everything President Obama presented. Not opposing one or two agenda items based on principles, but announcing nothing would pass. He was true to his word. He refused to bring most of the judicial nominees to the floor for vetting and voting. He promised the same for President Biden, but the power was taken out of his hands when Georgia voted for two democratic senators.
[This is where I realized it was just blah, blah, blah.]