Election Day Has Come and Gone: Time for Compromise is Here
Yesterday, I wrote about compromise and the large, seemingly impossible, compromises made to create our Constitution. In the larger lens, I also discussed how Election Day is our way of impacting the system. Candidates are not perfect. Usually our choice on the ballot is also a compromise based on the known beliefs and supporters of our chosen candidate. Our vote is our way of showing those in power the direction we wish our government to go.
Although all the votes are not done being counted, we appear to be headed, nationally, toward a divided government. It seems the Republicans will have a slim majority in the House, while the Senate will become 51/49 in favor of the Democrats, or remain at a 50/50 tie with Vice President Harris as a tie-breaking vote, in favor of the Democrats.
While the Senate will remain basically the same as it is right now, the House flip will have some impact, most notably with spending. The United States is over $31 Trillion in debt, or about $93,000, per every man, woman, and child. According to the US Treasury, the US Government spent $6.27 Trillion in Fiscal Year 2022 (Since October 2021). These numbers are astonishing.
According to Petr Svab, at the Epoch Times, our interest payments to service the debt annually will exceed the budget for the Department of Defense. This kind of spending is completely unsustainable. Both parties have their share of blame for getting us into this spending boondoggle, but we will probably need both parties to get us out of it too.
Article 1 of the Constitution is the largest article for a reason. The power to make law lies with Congress. Congress has the most expressed powers listed in the Constitution. We may have gotten away from that reality, by Congress delegating enormous power to the Executive Branch over the past 100 years, but the fact remains that it all starts with Congress.
LESSONS FROM ELECTION 2022
The “Red Wave” never materialized, but the change in Congress creates a divided government, not an unusual situation. I think it shows the electorate is sick of the polar extremes who garner all the clicks, tweets, and likes on social media, but are unable to compromise and get anything done. Tweets and Instagram videos may inflame passions, but turning that into any meaningful action or new legislation is a different animal.
The government of “We the People” is expected to handle issues important to the electorate. It shows that while everyone may not be happy with the current state of things, we are not willing to do a complete one-eighty. The idea of giving the full levers of power to the other side is not what the American people want. Instead, the electorate wants, like the Benjamin Franklin quote from yesterday, taking a little off the edges so we may be able to join the two sides. A little moderation from both sides would be a nice change for all of us.
Some will lament this election as a failure, from both sides. Gridlock will take hold in Washington and nothing will be accomplished. Truthfully, the system is built for gridlock. The ingenious system of “checks and balances” created by co-equal branches of government and two houses of Congress means there are plenty of reasons that bills are held up, items die in committee, and even a party controlling all branches are still unable to accomplish ambitious agendas.
A little more moderation could go a long way for “We the People.” Only time will tell how this turns out.
MORE READING ON THE SUBJECT
Michael Shellenberger, author of the book San Fransicko, wrote a much longer and detailed piece about the 2022 Midterms.
A very good read:
ON THE FLIP SIDE
Locally the results were a little different. As of now Brooke Jenkins holds a strong lead approaching the majority threshold to remain San Francisco’s District Attorney. Down ballot all of the so called “Public Safety Candidates” look to be winning their races. Even incumbent Supervisor Gordon Mar was sent packing. This sends a pretty clear message that San Franciscans are fed up.
While it does not give Mayor Breed a majority that favors her agenda, on the Board of Supervisors, it will be nice to have a couple more Supervisors pushing to change to a more moderate and less progressive San Francisco. The results of the “progressive” experiment are pretty striking; Rising crime, fewer cops, homeless encampments, frequent car break-ins, and literally “shitty” streets.
There are real challenges ahead in San Francisco that have yet to be seriously addressed, most notably the dead horse I keep beating, police department staffing, or lack thereof. We can keep squabbling over nonsense or we can start coming up with real solutions before the lawlessness continues and there is no one left holding the line to stop it.
In San Francisco at least, it appears the electorate is demanding a change.