Daily Archives: 11/07/2012

We Need Two Strong Parties

(Community Matters) Reading blogs, newspapers and Facebook postings, I’m reminded that our country is served well by at least two strong political parties. I take no comfort in the decimation of one, except admittedly to the extent one party stands united in denying me constitutional equality, or united in financing even more tax cuts for the rich at the expense of social and other services for those in need, or united in denying women the right to make their own medical & contraception decisions. Fortunately, the party that lost last night is not united about these objectives. Unfortunately for them, their primary system forced too many candidates into Faustian bargins and the American people remember. Our country is better served by debates and compromises between two parties.

To those at either political extreme, you are in the minority and will increasingly lose elections promoting extremist agendas. This country is no longer single culture dominant. We embrace the richness of our diversity, equality of opportunity, fiscal & personal responsibility, and attention to what ails our planet.

I could be wrong and maybe a Republican will again win the presidency in my life time, but I don’t think so – unless (& I hope they do) current party activists and elected leaders compromise and contribute to solutions dealing with immigration, a revenue model which reestablishes at least Clinton era tax rates & fairness between earned & investment income, and a spending plan which further eliminates waste and invests in physical and human infrastructure.


(Community Matters) We’re still waiting on the assignment of Florida’s 29 electoral votes – for now Pres Obama has won reelection 303 to 206. It appears he’ll have won by 332 to 206 and the popular vote 50% to 48%, or 58.7mm to 56.1mm.

Rs keep the House and Ds keep the Senate. Elizabeth Warren’s election is a huge win for consumers.

Equality prevailed. We’ll have our first openly gay Senator Tammy Baldwin and marriage equality won in Maine, Maryland and Minnesota – too close for a final call in Washington (state) but remain optimistic.

Voters in Travis County approved funding for our medical school. Austin voters approved 7 of 8 bond propositions and geographical representation. Housing bonds failed. This is regrettable, especially now when prices are probably as low as they will ever be and dollars to solve our increasing affordability problems can be most leveraged.

I’m hoping Ds and Rs can agree to move forward collaboratively. If House members refuse to compromise, then the President will have to become creative  in solving our fiscal issues. In the Senate, it’s time to end the 60 vote requirement to override a filibuster – maybe a 54 or 55 votes instead.