What bugs me about many of our elected politicians is how they play up to a now fairly sizable “base” of radical extremists in their parties.
They calculate that capturing voters who are absolutely closed-minded about most or all of the “hot buttons” of today — guns, fossil fuels, immigration, gay marriage, abortion, health care, birth control, pay requirements and, yes, government itself — will ensure their success in a primary or general election because the majority of moderates in their party will probably vote for them in sufficient number and rich radicals will give them more cash.
They are in cahoots with the extremists, whose ideas are usually in conflict with majority opinions and often with his or her own unexpressed opinions.
And they legislate, administer or judge accordingly.
When the record shows that a politician is mainly self-serving, our collective votes should require him or her to find another line of work — especially when the opponent seems to be truly thoughtful, open-minded and honest.
Selecting people of promise over these characters, although never a sure bet, will eventually result in parties working together again in a desperately needed bipartisan way.