We the People

Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty. Politics and civil commentary with community columnist John Eyster.

“WE WANT A VOTE!” We deserve a vote on gun controls!!

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John Eyster
Tuesday, April 9, 2013

“WE WANT A VOTE!” We deserve a vote on gun controls!!

WHY do our elected representatives whom we “hire” to VOTE on legislation in our Congress think they can AVOID that MAJOR assignment of their JOB DESCRIPTION: VOTE on legislation?! I AGREE with the crowd at President Obama's CT speech yesterday, "We want a vote! We want a vote! We want a vote!" I WANT A VOTE! Do YOU?

I think WE THE PEOPLE of the US should demand that every candidate for our US CONGRESS make a vow that s/he will SUPPORT parliamentary procedure to REQUIRE A VOTE on each and every BILL or other legislation, including CONFIRMATION OF APPOINTMENTS in the Senate, which passes a committee. WHY NOT?

I agree with the people attending President Obama’s speech in SANDY HOOK, CT yesterday when they shouted, “WE WANT A VOTE!” Philip Rucker reported in his Washington Post article, “The crowd cheered so loudly it was difficult at times to hear the president’s remarks. At one point, people interrupted Obama with chants of, ‘We want a vote! We want a vote! We want a vote!’” Amen and amen! Do YOU agree?

For more information about President Obama’s visit to CT yesterday, you can use this link to Philip Rucker’s feature article, “Obama in Connecticut pushes for gun control as critical week begins in Congress.”

The New York Times published an informative article by Peter Applebome and Jonathan Weisman which I suggest as another source, "Invoking Newtown Dead, Obama Presses Gun Laws."

Back to Philip Rucker's article in the Post, “Obama’s visit to Connecticut comes at the start of a critical week on Capitol Hill that could determine the fate of his sweeping gun-control agenda, with signs that senators may be nearing a deal to expand background-check requirements but with other proposals in serious jeopardy.”

He quoted the President saying, “I know that some of these proposals inspire more debate than others, but each of them has the support of the majority of the American people. All of them are common sense. All of them deserve a vote.”

That’s when Rucker reported on the response of the crowd, “The crowd cheered so loudly it was difficult at times to hear the president’s remarks. At one point, people interrupted Obama with chants of, ‘We want a vote! We want a vote! We want a vote!’”

Rucker concludes his article noting that yesterday morning former congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), who was shot and severely injured in 2011 during a constituent event in her Tucson district, tweeted: “What are we waiting for? I can’t remember a time when this many Americans spoke with such a united voice in favor of anything.” WHY are OUR ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES NOT REPRESENTING WE THE PEOPLE?! At least they should VOTE!

And then they’ll be ON RECORD for WE THE PEOPLE to evaluate their work! WHY NOT?

If you are interested in a thoughtful and valuable analysis of how WASHINGTON is really "working" (if that's what you call the process), I suggest you review a special Wonkblog feature, "Ezra Klein's Wonkblog" which focuses on the gun legislation situation NOW.

I was very happy to read that TODAY the group, “Mayors Against Illegal Guns,” the nonprofit group financed by Bloomberg (I), will unveil a scoring system to award lawmakers grades of A through F, much like the National Rifle Association, which has derived much of its power by deploying letter rankings against politicians at election time. We need this RATING SYSTEM!

For more details on the announcement coming today, you can use this link to read another article by Philip Rucker in the Washington Post, “Michael Bloomberg group’s gun-control scorecard will give lawmakers letter grades.”

It is high time that we have a RATING SYSTEM which helps WE THE PEOPLE evaluate our representatives on legislation related to GUNS. The NRA has demonstrated the influence of such a RATING SYSTEM in terms of PRO-GUN policies. NOW, I dare to hope, the BLOOMBERG GROUP will create an alternative RATING SYSTEM which will help us consider the votes of our representatives in Congress on reasonable and appropriate gun control legislation. WHY NOT?

Rucker reports that Mark Glaze, director of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, stated in a media briefing yesterday, “For decades, the NRA has done an admirable job of tracking to minute detail how members of Congress stand on gun bills. We’ve simply decided to do the same.” I agree. Do YOU?

There is the HOPE that the group’s new ratings system would produce a scorecard for senators and representatives that could serve as a guide for voters as well as campaign donors heading into the 2014 midterm elections and in future campaign cycles. Glaze is reported to have asserted, “A good grade could reward a vulnerable lawmaker for backing tougher gun laws, the thinking goes, while a poor grade would publicly shame a politician who votes against popular ideas such as universal background checks.”

I agree with the NEED for a scoring system. Glaze reported, “The Mayors Against Illegal Guns scoring system was developed in part because major political donors who support gun control have been seeking guidance about how to direct their contributions in upcoming election cycles.”

I have the audacity of HOPE that the new RATING SYSTEM of Mayors Against Illegal Guns will develop the same political influence as the NRA’s scorecards. What do YOU hope?

IF you WANT A VOTE on gun legislation, I urge you to communicate with YOUR reps in Congress - House member and our WI Senators - telling her/him, "I expect a VOTE on pending gun legislation."

Here we go…

Mr. E.

Last updated: 9:20 am Tuesday, July 9, 2013

John W. Eyster lives in the Edgerton area. He is an adjunct professor assigned with the online/distance education faculty of Viterbo University, LaCrosse. He continues his personal mission supporting democracy/civics education in Wisconsin K-12 schools through Project Citizen, We the People, Discovering Democracy (Milton HS). John is a community blogger and is not a part of The Gazette staff or management.

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