Newspaper

In the booming age of information, government is increasingly hiding behind closed doors to craft legislation that affects millions of people.

That’s not how the nation’s Founders intended government to work. It’s plainly a violation of the spirit of a government for the people, by the people.

Nevertheless, a select group of Republicans in the U.S. Senate are gathering behind closed doors to figure out how to dismantle the Affordable Care Act and recreate it on some other level. Sadly, the valuable discussions on Medicaid and other key elements of health care will not be public. Democrats did much of the same when developing the original act, although they reached out to Republicans and placed many of the discussions into public committee meetings and hearings.

On the state level, the political parties retreat into caucus meetings to hammer out disagreements over key issues and set agendas for legislative sessions. The polarization that comes from not including other political views and the public into these meetings is damaging to government’s purpose and effectiveness. No wonder Americans are disillusioned by government at so many levels.

The early members of Congress and state assemblies across the United State enjoyed engaging in lively discussions and debates to set the course for the nation and their states. Their constituents were more in touch with the topics of the day because political debates were open and surely entertaining. But most importantly the issues of the day were discussed in the open and gave everyone a chance to hear different views and express their thoughts.

Isn’t that America?

American politics has increasingly become secluded and enshrouded by idealism leaving many people on the outside looking in where their government is concerned.

Joining a caucus for the purpose of reviewing strategies is not a bad move for either political party. The secrecy that veils so much important discussion before votes are cast in Congress or legislatures is in contrast to our nation’s core purpose of having government that fairly and honestly represents the people.

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