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Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Time’s a wasting

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The end of November is inching near, and we’re still discussing who won the presidential election. 

For those of voting age during George W. Bush vs. Al Gore, you may recall it took 36 days before Gore conceded to Bush on Dec. 13, 2000. While some still believe Gore won the election, what’s happening today isn’t similar. 

It’s been clear for a while now that President Donald Trump lost his reelection bid. Yet, he refuses to concede. Instead he’s filed frivolous lawsuits and held embarrassing press conferences to try to turn the election in his favor. In every election there’s a winner and loser, and unfortunately, sometimes it’s you. The home team doesn’t always win. And just because you want something to be true, believe it should be true, doesn’t mean it’s actually true.

The irony is those who want to change the results in this election are the ones who told the losers in the last election to accept the results. As a matter of fact, the tone was more like, “suck it up, buttercup.”

Back in 2000, the results were contested because the margin was slim in the state where the presidential candidate’s brother was governor. But more importantly, we weren’t living in a pandemic that is causing deaths of Americans every day and making others ill to varying degrees. This pandemic has wreaked havoc on our economy, stressed our health care workers, overwhelmed hospitals and closed schools. It’s also putting schools in a precarious situation as it relates to their budgets and ensuring each and every student receives the education he or she deserves. It’s further divided this country along this weird demarcation of anti-maskers and pro-maskers. 

My point: we have much to focus on. Those who represent us in government are wasting precious time defending Trump instead of working to provide economic relief to their constituents.

As coronavirus cases soar higher and higher with each passing day, lawmakers are more concerned with negotiating government spending by Dec. 11. Of course, this spending bill is important as it’s how government is funded. Not passing a spending bill could lead to a government shutdown, and we don’t want that to happen. However, now is the time for lawmakers to get the coffee, No Doz or whatever else helps you stay awake and have marathon sessions to get bills passed to avoid a government shutdown — and help the American people suffering in the midst of a pandemic.

When COVID-19 appeared on the scene and mayors and governors shut down cities and states, there was a lot of talk about how it would shutter businesses, put people out of work and decimate the local and state economy. Legislators and business owners also told countless tales of workers who refused to return to work because they fared much better on unemployment.

Well, elected officials acquiesced to those pleas and cities and states reopened. Now, we have a mess on our hands. A mess that the Trump administration is ignoring. He’s too busy firing people and tweeting like a petulant child, and too many of his sycophants in the Republican Party are coddling him, too afraid of being on the receiving end of one of his temper tantrums. 

We’ve been in a pandemic for the better part of this year, and we still don’t have a plan of attack to help businesses and keep the economy going. We’re always “rounding” a corner, bend or turn, but we’ve yet to actually make it anywhere. The promise of “tens of millions of doses” of a COVID-19 vaccine by December isn’t likely to happen. The Trump administration hasn’t even issued federal guidance.

I recently wrote the real work starts after the election, and it’s time for us to roll up our sleeves and get started. It’s almost as if lawmakers read my words and are begging Americans to remove them from office because they’re behaving in ways that should jeopardize reelection.

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