What Happened to Compromise is Politics?

Politics are a game of balance.

If you, the citizen, give too much power to a single group, you will end up with a dictatorship. When both parties are perfectly balanced, you end up getting nothing done. This last scenario is today’s politics in America.

Politicians, like all players of games, have tools and weapons at their disposal. In football you have your body, in chess your pieces, and in politics your best tool is compromise.

In modern day politics compromise is a dirty word, politicians that are at the two extremes of left and right create voting blocks while the more moderate have to sway the middle.

This creates a representation problem among many others.

According to http://www.electproject.org/2018g, only about 50% of the eligible voter population voted and this was a high year for voter turnout. In academics, 50% is a failing grade.

With only 50% of the voting population represented, compromise becomes even more important in politics.

The American people have blamed Congress for years now for not doing their jobs and getting nothing done. The only time anything gets done whatsoever is when one party controls the House, Senate, and Presidency, while also having a good hand in the Supreme Court. This is because of the extremes in each party.

Compromise was once the center of the political world, things would get done and both parties as well as the middle would benefit. What we have now is a system where one party takes control and they undo everything the other party did when they had control.

A great example of this is the Government Shutdown. Regardless of who you blame for it, both sides are at fault for not finding some middle ground where both sides benefit.

Instead of compromising or making a deal, both sides of the aisle want exactly what they want or they shut down talks. All of this could be fixed by a simple compromise.

The results of compromises throughout history have been amazing. The best example of this is the Great Compromise also known as the Connecticut Compromise  that has defined the representation and legislated structure of every state since. Without this compromise, it is predicted that the Union would have split a mere five years after the end of the Revolutionary War.

Compromise during this time in history would still be very important to people living in today’s America and could set a precedent for more compromises in the future.

This circles back to my original statements about the causes of a lack of compromise and why it’s bad.

The closest thing I have seen to a compromise in terms of recent events was Donald Trump offering to extend DACA (Deferred Action of Childhood Arrivals) in exchange for his wall funding and that deal was rejected.

Rejections of any deal have led to millions of Americans being without paycheck for two months because of the shutdown continuing, which many can not afford to go through.

With the politicians we have, who do not use basic tools such as compromise, we basically have people who we pay to argue in favor of what we want. Sometimes they don’t even argue in favor of that.

When workers don’t use their tools properly and don’t do anything they are fired. When a football player stops tackling he is cut from the team, When a politician doesn’t use their tools, they get re-elected.

Either politicians need to change their ways or we need to change our politicians.