Imagine you live in a Republican district. Imagine the incumbent is a tea party candidate. His ideas seem sort of extreme, but it was either him or someone who had been in Congress much too long.
Imagine you’re not satisfied with your representative
But Republicans aren’t producing good laws. The federal deficit is going up with the increase in military spending. The bombs dropped on Syria’s abandoned airfield didn’t do anything to defeat ISIS, make progress towards peace, or bring jobs to America.
And they didn’t fix Obamacare. They didn’t even improve it. They voted time after time to repeal Obamacare for years, but they never had a plan to replace it. That just doesn’t seem right.
You wonder what’s possible
You wonder about “medicare-for-all.” You’re not libertarian, but the profit-motive makes sense to you. Health insurance companies can pay themselves up to 20% of premiums. The easiest way they can make more money is for health care to become more expensive.
Plus, public health care works really well in many countries, delivering good care plus lowering costs. And what if it were voluntary? What if people and businesses could opt to use the same medical insurance the federal government gives employees? And you recently read that big pharmaceutical companies make money off of drugs that get people hooked, not drugs that cure people.
And clearly climate change is pretty real. As a conservative, you don’t want huge changes, but ignoring a real problem isn’t the answer. Storms are getting worse, the ice packs are clearly melting. You flipped through a Scientific American- this stuff’s real. But Republican’s won’t even talk about it. If you were elected, you would.
What if you run?
If you were elected, you’d be willing to serve for just one or two terms and pass a term-limit law. Polls say 3/4 of Americans want it. Why doesn’t the Tea Party support it? Are they just as corrupt?
Most people think Congress is corrupt. You read that half of them “retire” to cushy board positions or become lobbyists for the companies they regulated. That should be stopped.
So you’re willing to run for office. But doesn’t that mean raising a ton of money to get your name out? And you’ll need to hire people to help with social media- how do you reach people and convince them? It sounds impossible. And how will you convince people you’ll be any more accountable than the current politicians?
A possibility emerges
These are the problems a challenger faces. The incumbent has a “war chest” of money and contacts who want favors like continued tax breaks. As a challenger, you have nothing. You could make similar promises, but you want to stop the corruption, not join them.
In the next article, we’ll see how the first week of your campaign could go.