The 2016 election cycle is almost over and with that we all hope to take a collective sigh of relief. What comes after, one can only wonder. Regardless, I take away three lessons from this past year and hope that we can chisel away at their underlying root cause in the hopes of repairing our broken political system. For me, it all starts upstream. The selection process is putting too many sub par candidates and undeserving people into office. So, all my suggestions impact the selection process. I have faith that if we can put the right people in office, they can at least try to work together versus pandering towards extreme members of a political base.
- Participation – simply put, more people need to participate and do so often. You can’t complain about leaders you put no effort into choosing. Less than one-third of all eligible voters participate in primaries. That means for the other 60%, your choices are being decided by a passionate few that may not have your interest at heart.
- Access – modern life is busy and complex. The electoral system needs to adapt and catch up to the pace of things today. Primaries need to be open, pit all candidates against each other in one big bucket and let the best two come out in the end. Early voting should be expanded and the major election days need to be moved to Saturdays. Lastly, we should auto-enroll everyone to vote like in Oregon and making voting something you opt out of not into.
- Money – keeping with access, we need to make running for office something that not only the rich and connected can do. We need to get money out of politics. There are too many people who could probably make a difference if they were not so deterred by the ever growing money game that is politics. Moreover, there are probably many politicians who would like to focus on policy and not the process of forever raising money just to stay in office.
Exhausted, a week away from home and demanding on site schedule. Really trying to balance work – life commitments. Ready for the election to be over and see where the country goes from here. Started to binge watch The Wire so I can see what it is I missed out on so many years ago.
My workout routine was wrecked by the effects of the flu shot this week and travel. I could barely keep it together the second half of the week with cough, aches and fatigue. I did get in 4 days of working out but only at about 50% effort. Trying to squeeze in one more 10k to half marathon before the year ends out.
Great to get to travel with my mom to Philly and visit Tyler at Franklin and Marshall. Was reminded by how important it is to travel with friends and family. Looking forward to many new adventures next year and in the remainder of this year.