I was struck by Republican Senator Jeff Flake’s recent comment that, if he was running for reelection, there is “no chance” he could have compromised with Democrats last week to delay a senate vote on Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination for the Supreme Court. “There’s no value to reaching across the aisle,” he explained; “there’s no currency for that anymore.” For anyone who understands the system of government out nation’s founders constructed over two centuries ago, that realization constitutes a recipe for the decline of the United States. Democracy is messy. A system of checks and balances designed to protect against dominance by one person or small group of people does not function effectively on cruise control. It requires the active participation of citizens and responsible leadership on the part of the most powerful among us. AND IT REQUIRES FLEXIBILITY BY BOTH.
Which leads me to the politics of our beloved Rabun County. Here the sources of our current stalemate have little to do with partisanship between Republicans and Democrats. Indeed, local leaders of our two national parties have joined to form the Rabun County Coalition for Good Government in an attempt to resolve the long-standing impasse between the county commission and the Clayton city council. Yet members of both these legislative bodies remain deeply divided in how to move forward in ending “the water wars” and signing off on a new Service Delivery Strategy that would restore the county’s eligibility for millions of dollars in state funding.
The current stalemate is helping no one, except perhaps some bureaucrats dining at the public trough. Citizens must unite in demanding that our leaders restore “currency” to the idea of working across partisan lines, however they may be defined.
— Bill Stueck, Dillard