Political Highlights

Gov. Gary Johnson: Stop the Political Duopoly

For days, the news media and the politicians have spoken of little else but the government’s use of force to take kids from their parents at the border. And it IS a big deal, watching frightened children being used as pawns in the never-ending Republican-Democrat game.

Our President? The message changes daily, but his latest is telling Congress to “stop wasting their time on immigration” and wait until after the November elections to do anything.

My first question is: What exactly is it that the two-party Congress is doing with enough urgency that “wasting time” is actually a consideration?

They certainly aren’t reducing spending. The $20 trillion national debt some of us have been pointing to as a real problem is now a $21 trillion debt — and growing every day.

Despite a lot of hand-wringing for the benefit of cable news, the politicians aren’t doing anything about the trade wars we are declaring on pretty much every ally we have. That would include all those same politicians who claim to be believers in free markets.

I could go on, but it’s past time that we admit that the two-party political duopoly has turned Washington DC into a very large, nonstop reality TV show. The problem, of course, is that this reality show actually has consequences — for all of us, and in fact, for the entire world.

It doesn’t have to be this way. The Founding Fathers warned against what would happen if two competing “factions” came to control the government. Turns out they were right, and we are there. Even the most nonpartisan, common sense issues are beyond the duopoly’s ability to function.

Take immigration and the separation of families. Put 535 normal Americans, selected randomly and who are not owned by special interests or extremist voting blocks, in a room and I promise that group could come up with common sense immigration reform in a day or two. I assure you they could come up with a system that controls the border, allows willing workers and refugees to enter legally, and avoid making little kids hysterical because they have no clue where their parents are or what’s going to happen to them.

The same goes for most of the issues we face today. Take the special interest politics out of the equation, and the federal budget could be balanced without the sky falling on anyone — other than a bunch of cronies and lobbyists.

As I frequently say, having served two terms as Governor of New Mexico, good government is easy. It’s about common sense. The same common sense the vast majority of Americans use to conduct their daily lives, live within their means, and generally not do things that are stupid.

The answer: Break up the two-party political duopoly. Break down the barriers to participation that keep independents and credible third-parties out of the process. We are supposed to be a Republic. Yet, the largest group of voters in America — those not affiliated with either of the two “major” parties — have virtually no voice, or vote, in the most important issues of the day.

The duopoly in many states has made it ridiculously difficult for third-party and independent candidates to appear on voters’ ballots. Far too often, the media ignores credible, serious candidates who don’t happen to be Republicans or Democrats. And from the presidential level down to local races, debate organizers and sponsors refuse to put that third or fourth podium on the stage.

It’s just wrong. It’s time to break up the duopoly and give the real majority in America the voice it deserves. Government as a reality show isn’t funny. It’s time to let serious people with serious ideas into the room.

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