First a disclaimer: Both Democrats and Republicans are guilty of putting partisan interests ahead of policy accomplishments. The current situation in Congress provides ample evidence of that practice.
Another stark example of that practice occurred in Kansas this week in connection with the release of a jobs-creation plan by Democratic leaders in the Kansas Legislature. The leaders had announced on Monday that they would hold two news conferences on Tuesday to outline their 14-point “Kansas Jobs First” plan.
Monday evening, before any details of the plan were released, the Johnson County Republican Party sent out an email summarily dismissing the Democratic plan which, it said, “will be based on fleecing the taxpayer of more money to ensure more people vote Democratic. We have seen this many times in the past …”
As it turned out, the Democratic plan involved changes in the state’s gambling laws that would encourage development of a southeastern Kansas casino and slot machines at three race tracks. According to the Democratic leaders, the changes would directly create jobs in the gaming industry and provide funding to train unemployed workers and help cities and counties with infrastructure projects that also would create jobs.
It may or may not be a good plan, but wouldn’t it have made sense to at least read it and see if there were any ideas worthy of examination before relegating the entire proposal to the trash heap?
One of the things that is frustrating people across the nation is the refusal of both state and national lawmakers to seek any middle ground on policies that might benefit their constituents. They react to proposals before even examining them. Americans can’t help but wonder whether, if they read the proposals and kept an open mind, they might find something in there that could serve as a basis for a bipartisan solution.
It’s just a thought.