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"We need a third party"

Below is the full text of a Letter to the Editor published originally published online in the Roanoke Times Opinion section on October 2, 2017:

Original text available at:

One of President Obama last speeches was to warn us about cynicism and the need to participate in the political process. I found that speech to be ironic in that he and the Democratic Party helped shape much of our nation’s cynicism.
Now that I have retired, finding the time to read, listen and participate has become significantly easier. As I do however, I am finding it more and more difficult to find out the specifics on various issues and how our representatives make decisions that affect us. Monitoring our elected representatives is hard work! You can read their “newsletter,” and be sure that it contains less than all the facts.
Congress tells us what we want to hear and with a slight of hand, conducts business behind closed doors to get re-elected. If you rely on televised or print media to monitor what our politicians are doing, have no doubt, our media outlets are also motivated by self-serving advantage rather than professional ethics. Try getting the real stories on wiretapping Trump Tower, advantage/disadvantage of the health care bill; the bill that would allow employers to demand genetic test results; and the elimination of federal science-based regulations designed to protect refuge lands in Alaska just to name a few?

Can we rely on Representatives’ Bob Goodlatte and Morgan Griffith to represent our interests over those of the Republican Party? They know better than most of us that we are typically a passive constituency, rarely holding them accountable. A majority Republican (or Democrat) Congress has become the greatest threat to our economy, environment, security, judiciary and well-being because of how it conducts business.
A great Virginian, Thomas Jefferson once said, “though the will of the majority is in all cases to prevail, that will to be rightful, must be reasonable; that the minority possess their equal rights, which equal laws must protect.”
The two party system has divided us! We need serious discussion on a real third party, not to elect a president, but to keep Republicans and Democrats from having a majority in Congress, and to keep us united.


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