Oh, I know I should steer clear of politics, but this one really ticks me off!
Democratic U.S. Representative Parker Griffith has announced that he plans on switching to the Republican party. And it works both ways. Earlier this year, United States Senator Arlen Specter from Pennsylvania, switched to the Democratic party after five terms in the GOP.
Party switching is nothing new, and hundreds of politicians have switched parties since the mid 1800s (although it’s only happened 21 times in the U.S. Senate). But the fact that it’s been going on for such a long time does not make it right. Actually, it feels really wrong, almost fraudulent. Citizens don’t just vote for individuals to represent them, they also often vote based on party affiliation. Running for office as a member of a specific party, and then switching once in office, is deceitful, and is essentially depriving voters of their right to elect their own representatives in government.
Put it this way. If you hired an employee for a multi-year contract based on promises and commitments that employee made, and then found out that the employee arbitrarily changed course and directions and plans without your consent, what would you do?
Politicians have every right to switch allegiances, but they should not be allowed to do so mid-term. And if they want to do just that, then they should be forced to run a mid-term election, essentially allowing citizens to decide if they find the change acceptable and if they feel like they are still being appropriately represented.
Is is time for a 28th amendment to the U.S. Constitution?