What Do YOU Expect From YOUR Elected Officials?

@anniepa (27523)
United States
December 19, 2009 2:48pm CST
When I say "YOUR" I mean, your Senators, your Congressman or woman, your President and V.P., your Governor and your state and local legislators/officials. All of us who are 18 or older, are citizens of the U.S and are not convicted felons have the right to vote for all of these offices. Sadly, far too many people who are eligible to vote don't bother doing so, but I think it's safe to say that most of you who post regularly in this interest aren't among those people. This question is for you! I suppose there are many reasons each of us vote for whomever we do. Some vote a straight party line and some vote for each person individually. Some vote based on a single or a select few issues and some vote for "the whole package". Hopefully, we all pay close attention to what the candidates stand for and promise before we commit ourselves to giving them our votes. Once you've voted what do you expect from the winners? I'd guess that if the person you voted for lost you wouldn't expect the winner to necessarily do everything you'd want him or her to do, right? I mean, elections DO have consequences, right? What I'm trying to find out is if you think your elected officials should follow the polls and calls, e-mails, letters, etc. and do what their constituents want, should keep ALL of their campaign promises or should simply follow their consciences since, after all, when they won the election that meant the most voters put their faith in them to do what's right? Annie
4 people like this
15 responses
@sirnose (2439)
• United States
19 Dec 09
I can sum it up in one word "HONESTY".......
2 people like this
• United States
19 Dec 09
I agree with you 100% - Honesty prevails in any walk oflife, especially when it comes to politics.
1 person likes this
@anniepa (27523)
• United States
20 Dec 09
Obviously, we'd all LOVE to be able to take honesty for granted as a trait of our elected officials, but I don't see that happening anytime soon! However, even if they WERE all honest, that's not really what I meant. Sometimes a politician will campaign on one side of an issue but once elected he or she does the opposite. Sometimes I suppose this could be justified; situations change plus there are things a CANDIDATE doesn't know that an OFFICIAL (at any level) does. At times it seems that voters and constituents (who obviously aren't always "voters" at all, let alone voters for the winning candidate!) get angry at their officials for doing exactly what they said they'd do. Anyway, I see it argued a number of ways on TV and radio, in print media and right here on myLot. Some say they should follow the opinion polls and do only what their constituents want. Some say - and sometimes it the very same who said the above - they should do what's "right" regardless of what the public wants. Trust me, I'm NOT defending our politicians in general, but there are times when they seriously can't win for losing! Annie
@xfahctor (14126)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
20 Dec 09
what I want is for them to just say what they believe durring a cmapaign. I don't want promises, I don't want grand standing, I don't want a super-hero. I just want an honest public servant who is willing to stand for what he believes in from the first day of the campaign, tell me exactly what he believes and sticks to it. I am far mor likely to vote for someone who comes on and sayys right from the beginning "these are what I see as the problems, these are what I see as the solutions and I can't promise I can change the world if I am elected, but I DO promise to do my best and I will stand by and work by what I believe in". I want a "WYSIWYG" (what you see is what you get) public servant. On the ste level I expect my reps, and my governor to serve my state and stand up for it. they do not work for the federal government nor do they answer to it. I want elected state officials that don't cave in to federal balckmail and bribery, that don't give their ear to national or out of state lobbyists and interests, that don't cower in fear of unconstitutional federal law or want to be carbon copies of other sttaes. I want them to represent US and celebrate everything that is unique about New Hampshire.
1 person likes this
@xfahctor (14126)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
20 Dec 09
Came back with another thought, or rather an extension on a thought. The constitution. I want an elected servant who isn't afraid to stand up on the house or senate floor, or from behind the white house press room pdium and say "I am sorry, but the constitution wil simply not allow us to do that, by my oath of office, I will have to vote no, no matter how much money you offer me or my state and no matter how much you threaten me, if you do either of those, I will hold a press conference and expose you nationaly and lead the charge for your impeachment."
1 person likes this
@anniepa (27523)
• United States
21 Dec 09
You know, this is going to sound goofy but I think what you and I both would like is for our real-life politicians to be like many of them in the movies and on TV. Every time I see a show with a political story-line I find myself thinking, "Why can't he (or she) REALLY be running for President?"! It doesn't matter what party the fictional candidate belongs to or where they stand on the fictional issues, they're just honest and honest-to-goodness real human beings. They refuse to resort to mudslinging, they keep their word even if it goes against their party or could hurt them politically and they admit that they're not perfect! Oh, well...I guess that's why they call it fiction...lol! Annie
@xfahctor (14126)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
21 Dec 09
It is a bit fictional right now isn't it, a bit idealistic, lol, sorry. But, does it have to be? I would put to you that the reason this is only an ideal rather than a reality, is because we keep electing politicians instead of public servants. I can't imagine that out of 300 million amaericans, there aren't plenty of honest people, people of genuine character. But we keep sending professionals, lawyers, etc instead of average joes as was intended. Our congress was never intended to be an elite all knowing body of learned men who are there as a career. It was intended to be a citizen legislature.
• United States
24 Dec 09
Call me a cynic but I don't expect a thing from any of those liars. They lie to get in the job and when they are there they lie to remain seated. The Congress can't agree the sun is shining. But that's okay. The People and government haven't been truly connected since November 23,1963. The day after They killed Kennedy. I think that's when the break truly started. Now it would be a miracle if we Really got back together.
1 person likes this
• United States
6 Jan 10
I think the Kopechne thing saved his life. Because of it he couldn't become president and They left him alone. but the irony is that he made more of a difference than both Bobby and John combined.
• United States
21 Dec 09
Well lets see...I expect honesty, integrity,professionalism and most of all being the voice of the people who elected them. Not the voice of the lobbyist or voting against what their state wants because of a "back door deal". THey should ALWAYS PRESENT THE WISHES OF THE PEOPLE WHO ELECTED THEM. I know I know....I exspect tooo much.
1 person likes this
@anniepa (27523)
• United States
6 Jan 10
I agree, Lil, but I don't see it as being quite that simple. I mean, what about when the wishes of the people who elected them are tied or close to it? What if they were elected because of certain things they said they stood for (or against) and now some of their constituents don't want them to do what they promised? What if they sincerely, deep in their hearts, KNOW that the people are against something based on misrepresentations of the facts? Annie
• United States
7 Jan 10
Well I personally think no matter what they promised on the campaign trail....if the poeple now don't want it after they are elected....then don't do it. Plus no one always agrees with poltiicans. They run on some stuff you like and some you don't. That does not mean that sence they got elected that the poeple HAVE to take the good with the bad. They have every right as the boss to say...hey I liked this so yes you can do this or hey i voted for you but I did not like this one thing you ran on and so I don't want you to do this. Voting for someone is not always because you liked who the person was or what the ran on. SOme vote because he or she was the lessor of the two evils or to vote "against" the other guy. A vote is not a ringing endorsement of everything they say or do.The will of the poeple must be the most important factor....there should never be the whole " I know better than you do what you want" or " you don't understand so I am going to vote how I want". Or this lobbyist paid me a few million so forget you guys I am voting with them. IF they feel the poeple don't understand or misunderstand...then hold a press conference, town hall meeting etc and talk to them.....but at the end of it if they still dont want it...then you vote how they want...not how you want. The will of the people MUST be done. If the will of the people is close to an equal split....try to work them on a compromise...find out what will make the majority of them agree. Find out what the objections are and if you can fix them. But as I have said...the will of the people must always be done. Even if they the elected official don't personally agree with it. They are there to represent the will of the people who elected them...not to present what they personally want.
@jb78000 (15163)
20 Dec 09
i am not. to my enormous relief, a citizen of the us so i don't have any senators etc. i have spoken to my mp, and he is ok although does not always do what he is told (by me) which is a bit of a pain.
1 person likes this
@xfahctor (14126)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
20 Dec 09
Dear Mr. Parliment, It has come to my attention that one of your citizens is complaining a bit about you to Americans. Sincerely, A bald concerned non Scottish citizen.
1 person likes this
@jb78000 (15163)
20 Dec 09
dear baldy everybody is always complaining about us. we would get very worried if they stopped. yours mr parliament
1 person likes this
@irisheyes (4372)
• United States
22 Dec 09
I expect them to be honest enough not to be blatently dishonest, professional enough to turn in a vote on a regular basis and smart enough to know that they owe their job to the voters.
1 person likes this
@anniepa (27523)
• United States
6 Jan 10
I LOVE that line - " honest enough not to be blatantly dishonest"! Annie
• Philippines
20 Dec 09
That they'll do what they have promised...
@anniepa (27523)
• United States
20 Dec 09
I'm going to play the devil's advocate here and ask you this: What if they DO keep their promises but something has made YOU decide you don't want them to do what they promised? What if they discover after taking office that what they promised isn't in the best interest of their constituents? (I'm assuming they're being honest and true to themselves in this one...I know, it can be a stretch sometimes...) What if whichever they do - keep or break their promises - they're doing what most of their constituents want, whether YOU agree with the majority or not? Annie
@megamatt (14319)
• United States
20 Dec 09
I expect elected officials to be honest. With both the people who voted them in and themselves. I expect them to try to uphold their promises. Even though I might not agree with their stance on certain issues, I hope they remain convicted on their beliefs. Unfortunately, that tends to be the exception rather than the rule. I wish it was not true, I wish it was not the case, but the sad fact is this. Those with the most money can run the best campaigns whether how truthful or honest. They can make promises that they do not attend to keep and may not be held accountable for with the extent that they should be. Still it's merely a dream and perhaps I'm expecting a bit too much out of those who are supposed to look out for the best interests of the people at large.
1 person likes this
@anniepa (27523)
• United States
20 Dec 09
Megamatt, welcome to myLot and I hope you enjoy it here and post to my discussions often! Thank you for a great response. I couldn't agree more about how "those with the most money can run the best campaigns" and that's something I've been wishing would be changed for as long as I can remember but it's only gotten much worse. Annie
@artistry (4153)
• United States
20 Dec 09
..Hi annie, Tell you what I expect my elected officials, whoever they may be and whatever office they may hold, to show me by their actions in office that they understand the plight of the common man and woman. That is why I am going to miss Ted Kennedy so much. He always looked around to see what he could do for people who needed help. Not like a JoeLieberman who has the best health care insurance taxpayers money can buy and thumbs his nose at the people who are begging for affordable health insurance,some of whom are dying every day. I think theofficials should put it alltogether, sometimes things arenot quite straight up black or white. I think they should do what they feel is best for the most people. But not to be persuaded by money being put in their pockets by big this or big that. Take care. Forgive my lackof proper spacing my computer is messing up.
1 person likes this
@anniepa (27523)
• United States
21 Dec 09
I just can't believe how Lieberman has changed! To think there was time when I actually LIKED him! Now I think he's just turned into a bitter old man. Annie
• United States
19 Dec 09
I disagree with you on one point, as we can testify to - there are many more Americans voting and joining in the political foray. It is also prevalent that many Americans are keeping a close eye on public officials activity and business deals. Just to say the least, the recent debacle of Governor Mark Sanford is a prime example of gross negligence. Great Topic.
@anniepa (27523)
• United States
20 Dec 09
You're correct, we can feel proud that there have been more voters turn out in the last few elections. However, we still could do much better. Not too long ago I'd heard that only about half or less of those who are eligible to vote were even registered and then on election day only about half of those who are registered turned out. There were many new registrations in 2004 and even more in 2008 and the turnout was considerably better but I think it should be up in the 80-90 percentile in a country like ours. Especially now when there are so many groups willing to give rides to the polls to those who need them and people who make phone calls in advance to let people know of the availability of absentee ballots for those who are away or can't get to the polls. After helping people get to the polls last year I realize the older people are much more willing to make a REAL effort than some of the younger ones. There were many people confined to walkers and wheelchairs who were there despite the inconvenience and discomfort. The young people are really starting to come around and I hope that trend continues and grows! Annie
@laglen (19778)
• United States
21 Dec 09
I think that on day to day issues, using their noggin should be enough. When it comes to "fundamentally changing our country", then they dam well better listen to their constituents.
@uath13 (8204)
• United States
20 Dec 09
Your running on the assumption that they're not all a bunch of corrupt S.O.Bs. I just hope the one I'd vote for would do the least amount of damage. So far they're almost all a disappointment.
1 person likes this
@kirrugadu (114)
• India
20 Dec 09
Now iam 21 years old i have applied for the voter identity card at my age of 18 but till now i didnt get the identity card, with my voter ID card i cant do anything, icant take a driving licence for everything of government service i need voter id card
1 person likes this
@coolcoder (2019)
• United States
19 Dec 09
Normally I expect them to do the will of their constituents, but that isn't happening at all these days. They might as well draft a bill saying "We, the members of the House and Senate, do hereby declare that we know what's best for the American people, and are resolved, by any means necessary, to explain to said America people what's best for them." In other words, "Screw our constituents and what they want." It's disgusting.
1 person likes this
@us2owls (1681)
• United States
20 Dec 09
Honesty and openess. Wheres your true genuine birth certificate Mr. Obama ??????