Good question. – – Promoted from the diaries by Rosi
Cross-posted from Blog the Fifth:
A comment over on Blue Jersey about the state of our Congressional District really raised an eyebrow and got me thinking. The comment was this:
I’ll give you another example – I live in NJ-5, Scott Garrett is my congressman. It is looking more and more like the county parties aren’t going to put ANYONE up – at a time where republican turnout will be higher and more motivated than the past 5+ years.
This is a sad statement on our politics in their current state. Gerrymandering has gotten to a point where folks like Garrett can serve until they are redistricted out or retire. His only threat real and perceived is in the primary, when the smallest fraction of the electorate makes all the decisions. Democrats won’t run anyone because they don’t want to spend the money. Politics is a business.
This reality undermines the entire intent of a Representative being accountable to their constituents. Forget the fact that the Democrats can’t get someone who believes enough in their values to step up. With the Democrats punting, there’s no one to bring up relevant questions for voters to ponder at the ballot box. Why vote against small business tax cuts repeatedly? Why vote against balancing the budget repeatedly? Why vote against extending unemployment benefits repeatedly? Why vote to hasten Medicare’s insolvency?
Granted, Garrett is by all accounts safe in this seat. In fact it hasn’t really been close on election day in a very long time. That said, Democrats failure to supply voters with any kind of alternative abdicates their fundamental responsibility in our already flawed two party system.