Bayh gives up on the U.S. Congress

opinions

February 17, 2010 - 12:00 AM

Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana announced Monday he would not seek re-election because he was fed up with Congress.
“For some time, I have had a growing conviction that Congress is not operating as it should. There is too much partisanship and not enough progress — too much narrow ideology and not enough practical problem-solving,” he said.
“Even at a time of enormous challenge, the peoples’ business is not being done.”
“Couldn’t have said it better myself,” will be the response from a huge majority across the land. Perhaps many in Congress and even in the White House will nod in silent assent.
Still, it is depressing to hear a man so highly respected by his congressional colleagues say, in effect, that he has given up on his country’s government. For that is the essence of Sen. Bayh’s explanation for his decision.
Sen. Bayh is a centrist. A guy who reaches across the aisle to help form a consensus. A person who depends on facts and reasoned argument to reach decisions. In short, a man who represents the majority of the American people, which is why, as a Democrat, he was almost certain of re-election in Republican-leaning Indiana.

For reasons of his own, he decided that it was not up to him to try and change the atmosphere that he found so inimical to good government. Rather than fight, he will step aside and let the ideologues have at each other.
Indiana and the rest of the 50 states will be the worse for his decision.

— Emerson Lynn, jr.

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