Political grandstandingrampant on both sides

Published 6:00 am Monday, November 20, 2000

We had so hoped that by now this country would know who our nextpresident is going to be. It has been a frustrating, butfascinating, 12 days of watching our democracy in action.

Our founding fathers would be proud to see that the system ofchecks and balances is working as planned, and despite thepolitics, our system of government is still intact and operating asusual. They would not be so proud of the vicious political gamebeing played.

While George W. Bush and Al Gore are jockeying for position inthe court of public opinion, we should all remember that each sideis spinning facts to their advantage. The public good is not alwaysthe priority, and both are guilty. That spinning has a dangerousside, in that a prolonged battle will have a damaging effect oncitizens’ belief in our system.

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There has been — and will be further — debate on our electoralcollege system, its merits and weaknesses. While some Democrats arecrying that the popular vote should be the deciding factor, and weknow Republicans would be doing the same if Bush were leading thevote total, one should realize the danger of decisions by only thepopular vote.

Our electoral college system was designed to balance the denselypopulated areas of the country with the more sparsely populatedrural areas. Without that balance, a candidate could simply ignorethe needs of the rural areas over the vote-rich areas such as thenortheast and west coast. States like Mississippi would havelittle, if any, voice.

Yes, the last 12 days have been frustrating, but sometimes thewheels of government must move slowly to insure the best interestsof the democracy. What we do not need is the politicalgrandstanding.