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As partisan politics continues to disengage the majority of US citizenship, independent voters are taking note and making ground. Painted in striking contrast, Gallup analysis indicates the US is voicing its displeasure with a rapid departure from partisan politics, showing 40% of the US voters now identify themselves as independent of any party.
Pew reflects the same trend upwards for independent voters which should be sending a crystal clear message to all elected officials; partisan politics is taking on water and your party’s bottomless pockets are in fact bottomless cans incapable of bailing you out.
However, the rising water in the boat continues to go unnoticed as the the extreme polarization of partisan politics has not only disengaged the American public, it has seemingly made the party-line partisans both deaf and blind to the message they should heed.
In all 50 states, independent voters are calling upon Congress and the President to break the stranglehold partisan politics has on our political system and although the President has established the Presidential Commission on Election Administration, its focus remains bi-partisan rather than non-partisan.
In other words; it’s politics as usual.
I watch in shock, disbelief and anger as our elected officials become increasingly divided along party lines, entangled in the discord of pulpit politics as they disengage themselves from the population to which they’re obliged to serve, dividing a nation to a degree I haven’t seen since before the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950’s and 60’s.
Yet, even more alarming is the how this system will most certainly entrench a sense of apathy in the new generation of voters who will harbor a far deeper level of disdain for the utterly dysfunctional political system owned by partisan politics that is theirs to inherit, unless we do something to correct it now.
The very characteristics of which I speak; apathy, cynicism, disinterest and mistrust of our political processes are a direct result of decade upon decade of abject failures within our extremely polarized system of partisan politics which has disenfranchised more than 40% of this country’s registered voters.
40% of our active voting population! This number, comprising the voting majority in the United States, can no longer be overlooked, nullified, or considered inconsequential as we seek a means to progressively map our country’s future. Clearly, an overwhelming majority of voters are voicing growing dissent to the myopic goals of today’s partisan roadblocks to our constitutional right to declare a voice in our own governance.
Sadly, this number excludes those voters who have simply given up on the process entirely as a result of a political system that is absolutely oblivious to the voices of the citizens of this nation, those people who deem it a fool’s errand; a wasted effort to vote, for our options range from inferior to meager due to the divisive attitudes, restrictions and limitations of a partisan government.
As partisanship continues to decline in validity due to self-serving, self-perpetuating, proprietary ideals, conversely non-partisan efforts are rapidly advancing progressive ideals and joining together a means and a vote for improving the future of our nation.
Time is long past to end the extreme polarization of this country and it must end with our leaders setting the example, just as those who dared dream of this country’s great potential some 237 years ago, that we can and must improve upon a great experiment in true democratic governance through cooperation, negotiation and participation.
We must remove the barriers to genuine democratic elections by supporting open primaries, non-partisan elections and affording non-partisan candidates and voters the same rights as those enjoyed by the now minority partisan participants.
Take Action! End partisan politics by contacting your state officials; write, call and e-mail until your independent voice is heard. You can also send a letter to the Presidential Commission on Election Administration through several outlets supporting independent voters such as independentvoters.org and their state affiliates and take action by signing on to the Open Letter to the President’s Commission on Election Administration.