The divisiveness in our politics, both locally and nationally, seems particularly apparent recently. In just one edition of the past week's newspaper, for instance, there have been swipes from left about Foxconn and from the right about the expansion of Medicaid.
This is not a new phenomenon. Way back in 1810, James Freeman Clarke spoke to the fact that holding to core beliefs was not always an easy task. He distinguished between politicians and statesmen: politicians think about the next election while statesmen think about the next generation. We need more statesmen. Our elected officials are fundamentally good people who want to do the right thing for the common good of the people they represent. Though once elected, it seems that the core values they once held get lost in the quest for reelection.
Foxconn may create 30,000 new jobs. Medicaid expansion could allow 82,000 more people to have access to better care. Don't both of these issues that speak to the core values of our society? It's time to do the right thing even if, in the short term, it's unpopular.
I would encourage both Tony Evers and Robin Vos to concentrate on being statesmen as they search for compromises in the budget. Sometimes it is better to lose and do the right thing than to win and do the wrong thing.
Dennis McGoldrick, Wind Point