Friday, February 09, 2007

A Question of Money.

I have often contemplated seeking public office, specifically State Legislator, since our current crop of elected officials generally can't seem to find their arse with both hands and a road map when it comes to conservative principles, however I have come to the conclusion that such an endeavor is doomed by the rules of the system. State legislators are paid something on the order of $7800 every other year, and the costs to campaign for such a job are not inconsequential. Therefore only two kinds of people can afford to every try to run for legislative office in this state: those who are independently wealthy and have no need for the money, or those who will sell their souls to the highest bidder in order to garner enough payoffs and campaign contributions to be able to live on the salary legislators get. But in doing so that person is beholden to the people who are putting food on his table. Neither are in a position to understand or care about the plight of the average person. I understand the concept of a citizen statesman, and I wholeheartedly support it. But the system as it currently exists does not.

I propose that legislators be paid a fixed $40,000 a year salary, and that they be term limited, 6 terms in the house (12 years), and three in the senate (12 years). In this way, we will be able to recruit people of more modest means to participate in the legislative process without making them beholden to every lobbyist with a checkbook that walks in the door.

4 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't know why people wish to get into politics. Your mindset seems altruistic, and I applaud it. I'm just to cynical to believe that anyone involved in social services, the justice system, or the political system are trustworthy. There is such widespread corruption that I feel like Diogenes searching for an honest man. Maybe I've just looked in the wrong places.

February 10, 2007 8:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ror*,

Why not pay them a better salary than $40k and have have them meet year round every year?

That still wouldn't eliminate some of the obstacles that keep people like you and me out of office but it seems like it would open up our choices. Only people who can afford to take time off from their jobs currently run.

Don

February 13, 2007 6:55 AM  
Blogger Rorschach said...

I did not suggest year round meetings simply because the lege is dangerous enough as it is meeting every other year. Besides, with the system set up as it is, State Reps have to use the off year for campaigning because they are elected every two years. There may be wisdom in extending their term so they are not constantly campaigning. As to the higher salary, I'd agree to that if they would cut or eliminate the pension.

February 13, 2007 8:06 AM  
Blogger Dave said...

Oh Yeah and don't forget strictly public financed elections.

March 01, 2007 8:58 PM  

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