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All politics are local…

If only that were true! I just spent an hour listening to Congressman Peter Welch talk to a group of concerned and engaged Vermonters at the South Royalton Co-op. I was so impressed by Congressman Welch’s ability to really connect with people, and to provide thoughtful, practical, logical responses to real concerns. If only more of Congress could be like him, I think this country could actually get something done. Perhaps most impressive was his ability to deal with a man who clearly had opposite views from him — he was able to speak reasonably and talk about how, even with different views, people can come together to get things done. What makes it hard to get things done is when people fight for ideology (rather than actual results) and choose to either ignore or make up their own facts.

I don’t know how others feel right now, but I feel like there are so many big issues out there and that very little progress is being made on any of them. I asked Congressman Welch what we could do to help get the message to Congress that we’re tired of all this fighting, all of these divisive politics, and that we just want them to get to work and do something and make compromises, which is what our system is supposed to be all about. He said that people are doing that in Vermont, and I think he’s right on that point. To see the state respond to Irene and to see how people are working toward real outcomes in this state is inspiring. He said that Vermont was a beacon, an example for others. So, here I am talking about Vermont being a beacon. In this state, we have people from all different parts of the political spectrum, but we are able to communicate, work together, compromise, and actually get things done. And there’s no reason why this shouldn’t be able to happen on the national level.

Thank you, Congressman Welch, for the good work you’re doing. I hope more of your colleagues in Congress will look to your example as a voice of reason, and someone willing to compromise and make sacrifices to achieve real good for the people of this country, rather than refusing to move from a position in order to protect an idea.

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