Running for Office is Making a Promise to Serve Out Your Term

 

Imagine you buy a book. The cover and blurb offer an interesting story. You buy the book and really enjoy it. However, two-thirds of the way through, you find the story just ends and the rest of the pages are blank. You would feel cheated. You bought a book with the inherent promise the book would be complete. It is the minimum expectation, really.

When I agreed to run for President of my professional organization, the LPCA of GA, I was told it was a three-year commitment. I am coming to the end of that this June. The inherent promise to the organization and its members whose votes I solicited was that I would serve the three years. The President before me almost died during her first year. She ended up serving all three years. While my terms have not been that bad, I have paid a price to do this. I pay it gladly, but it is still there.

When someone puts himself out there to represent the People, he has an obligation to serve. He agreed to it. Outside of failing health (FDR should not have run again) there really is no reason to shirk that responsibility. I include running for another office in this, but I understand why that happens. Still, I do not consider that as egregious as quitting because things got too hard. Certainly, timing your leaving to ensure the people you represent cannot get new representation is just spite.

George Washington came out of retirement to take on the job of President , served two terms to set our nation on its path, and most scholars will say the stress of this shortened his life. That is servant-leadership.

As voters, we have the very reasonable expectation that the person who runs for election fulfills his promise to serve out his term. To shirk that responsibility is an act of selfishness. If you are not willing to serve our your term, don’t put yourself forward for it. Indeed, we have a right to demand people live up to that promise.

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  1. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    Obviously life throws all of us curve balls which, as mere humans, we cannot foresee. With that being said, I agree with you. A person running for office accepts responsibility for fulfilling their commitment if elected.

    • #1
  2. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    cdor (View Comment):

    Obviously life throws all of us curve balls which, as mere humans, we cannot foresee. With that being said, I agree with you. A person running for office accepts responsibility for fulfilling their commitment if elected.

    Yes. Things can come up. 

    • #2
  3. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    Representatives Chris Stuart (UT), Kevin McCarthy (CA), Bill Johnson (OH), Ken Buck (CO), and Mike Gallagher (WI) deserve our close scrutiny. There ought to be a cost for breaking a public trust.

    • #3
  4. The Scarecrow Thatcher
    The Scarecrow
    @TheScarecrow

    There are things that can’t be written into law, or regulation. They are things that must be able to ascribed to what we generally call “character”. If we have a common understanding and agreement of what constitutes good character, then we can have a workable culture. They are the capacity for and respect for things like integrity, shame, seemliness, honesty, consistency. 

    This also applies to a nation as well. We can have a National character. It is what one means when one says “I am a proud American”. (Or German, or Swede, or whatever.) It means “I adhere and aspire to these values”. 

    Very difficult to maintain these unspoken yet vital qualities in a people when you purposely mix so many different cultures together and just hope for the best. You end up having to give everybody a pass on everything so you don’t hurt anyones feelings, or whatever, and instead try to clumsily write virtuous behavior down in law somehow. 

    We are doomed.

     

    • #4
  5. Globalitarian Misanthropist Coolidge
    Globalitarian Misanthropist
    @Flicker

    It’s not about anything as lofty as public trust so much, I don’t think.  It false advertising.  It’s fraud, whether it’s legal or not.  If you had declared when you were running that you were only going to serve out 18 months of your term, you probably wouldn’t have gotten elected.  Or if you said that you’d faithfully execute your office unless something better comes along, you probably wouldn’t have gotten elected in the first place.

    And come on, we all know this is all planned and strategized to put the House under anti-Trump control and somehow vote to bar him from the ballots or from office.

     

    • #5
  6. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    I wish I could remember enough to do a duckduckgo search and fill in details. All I can remember for certain is a local news broadcast of a just-elected U. S. Representative announcing that he was resigning, IIRC, less than 12 weeks into his term. He more-or-less apologized to his supporters, said he had seen all he needed to see of Washington, and that he was “coming back to Lexington to be a simple country lawyer again.” 

    I’d guess he was told that his committee assignments would be dependent on how much money he raised for the party, and told now that you’re here, here is what you have to do to stay here. Your re-election campaign starts as soon as you take your seat, and until you’ve proven yourself to the party elders, you have no influence at all. And, you’ll never have much because your state has only ten electoral college votes. 

    • #6
  7. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male
    @MiffedWhiteMale

    Globalitarian Misanthropist (View Comment):

     

    And come on, we all know this is all planned and strategized to put the House under anti-Trump control and somehow vote to bar him from the ballots or from office.

     

    Not everything is a conspiracy.  In fact, most things aren’t.  Maybe he’s just a jerk who’s walking out in his commitment. 

    • #7
  8. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    Globalitarian Misanthropist (View Comment):

     

    And come on, we all know this is all planned and strategized to put the House under anti-Trump control and somehow vote to bar him from the ballots or from office.

     

    Not everything is a conspiracy. In fact, most things aren’t. Maybe he’s just a jerk who’s walking out in his commitment.

    He claimed he has his reasons: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/wisconsin-rep-mike-gallagher-cites-family-safety-in-decision-to-leave-congress-early/ar-AA1nfXWS

    It was the timing of his resignation that was suspicious. 

    • #8
  9. DonG (CAGW is a Scam) Coolidge
    DonG (CAGW is a Scam)
    @DonG

    The higher the office the higher the commitment.  Therefore Mike Flynn is bigger coward that Mike Gallagher.   Our country would be in a lot better shape had Flynn not surrendered to the Deep State.

    • #9
  10. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    DonG (CAGW is a Scam) (View Comment):

    The higher the office the higher the commitment. Therefore Mike Flynn is bigger coward that Mike Gallagher. Our country would be in a lot better shape had Flynn not surrendered to the Deep State.

    They ran him out. I don’t see how we can blame Flynn. I blame Mr. Personal Honor Mike Pence for undermining the Republic, and PDT for letting it happen.

    • #10
  11. DonG (CAGW is a Scam) Coolidge
    DonG (CAGW is a Scam)
    @DonG

    Barfly (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Scam) (View Comment):

    The higher the office the higher the commitment. Therefore Mike Flynn is bigger coward that Mike Gallagher. Our country would be in a lot better shape had Flynn not surrendered to the Deep State.

    They ran him out. I don’t see how we can blame Flynn. I blame Mr. Personal Honor Mike Pence for undermining the Republic, and PDT for letting it happen.

    Being run out is a choice.  You are correct about Pence pushing him out and Trumping siding with Pence over Flynn.   Still, Flynn did not fight it and Flynn is the one guy that had a hint at how bad the Deep State was.

    • #11
  12. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    DonG (CAGW is a Scam) (View Comment):

    Barfly (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Scam) (View Comment):

    The higher the office the higher the commitment. Therefore Mike Flynn is bigger coward that Mike Gallagher. Our country would be in a lot better shape had Flynn not surrendered to the Deep State.

    They ran him out. I don’t see how we can blame Flynn. I blame Mr. Personal Honor Mike Pence for undermining the Republic, and PDT for letting it happen.

    Being run out is a choice. You are correct about Pence pushing him out and Trumping siding with Pence over Flynn. Still, Flynn did not fight it and Flynn is the one guy that had a hint at how bad the Deep State was.

    Was Flynn and elected official? 

    • #12
  13. CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill Coolidge
    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill
    @CarolJoy

    As far as I am concerned, every single Congress critter who voted for the 91 billion dollar foreign aid package could resign tomorrow, and it wouldn’t bother me one bit.

    We all know there is no ability for taxpayers to pay this off. We are already 34 trillion in debt.

    So what will happen – and it is a tragedy –  is that once again the government will digitally print up the money.

    Anyone here who doesn’t understand what that means had better not be complaining on ricochet when food, fuel and other essential items continue to reflect high spikes of inflationary pricing.

     

    • #13
  14. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Scam) (View Comment):

    Barfly (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Scam) (View Comment):

    The higher the office the higher the commitment. Therefore Mike Flynn is bigger coward that Mike Gallagher. Our country would be in a lot better shape had Flynn not surrendered to the Deep State.

    They ran him out. I don’t see how we can blame Flynn. I blame Mr. Personal Honor Mike Pence for undermining the Republic, and PDT for letting it happen.

    Being run out is a choice. You are correct about Pence pushing him out and Trumping siding with Pence over Flynn. Still, Flynn did not fight it and Flynn is the one guy that had a hint at how bad the Deep State was.

    Was Flynn and elected official?

    No, he was not. Which is why I don’t understand what Mike Flynn did that relates to your post,Bryan. He was thrown under the bus by Mike Pence, and then rolled over and backwards several times. That’s the way I saw it

    • #14
  15. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    cdor (View Comment):

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Scam) (View Comment):

    Barfly (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Scam) (View Comment):

    The higher the office the higher the commitment. Therefore Mike Flynn is bigger coward that Mike Gallagher. Our country would be in a lot better shape had Flynn not surrendered to the Deep State.

    They ran him out. I don’t see how we can blame Flynn. I blame Mr. Personal Honor Mike Pence for undermining the Republic, and PDT for letting it happen.

    Being run out is a choice. You are correct about Pence pushing him out and Trumping siding with Pence over Flynn. Still, Flynn did not fight it and Flynn is the one guy that had a hint at how bad the Deep State was.

    Was Flynn and elected official?

    No, he was not. Which is why I don’t understand what Mike Flynn did that relates to your post,Bryan. He was thrown under the bus by Mike Pence, and then rolled over and backwards several times. That’s the way I saw it

    Thanks. Appointments are a different kettle.of fish

    • #15
  16. E. Kent Golding Moderator
    E. Kent Golding
    @EKentGolding

    I am stunned politicians sometimes break promises.

    • #16
  17. WI Con Member
    WI Con
    @WICon

    These members that are retiring and leaving early – is there a knowledge/feel for what “type” of Republican they generally are? Its rare that we ever get rid of the squishes – wondering if there is a perception by them generally that they are (finally) being held to account – resist the Left and the days of easy money are rapidly drawing to a close. 

    • #17
  18. Susan Quinn Member
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    cdor (View Comment):
    No, he was not. Which is why I don’t understand what Mike Flynn did that relates to your post,Bryan. He was thrown under the bus by Mike Pence, and then rolled over and backwards several times. That’s the way I saw it

    Mike Flynn was bankrupted by the attacks, and then they said they’d go after his son and drag him in. I don’t blame Flynn for leaving.

    • #18
  19. DrewInWisconsin, Œuf 🚫 Banned
    DrewInWisconsin, Œuf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill (View Comment):

    We all know there is no ability for taxpayers to pay this off. We are already 34 trillion in debt.

    It’s sad that there’s only a small majority of Republicans who object, and “sophisticated” Republicans do nothing but smear them as kooks.

     

    • #19
  20. DrewInWisconsin, Œuf 🚫 Banned
    DrewInWisconsin, Œuf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    WI Con (View Comment):

    These members that are retiring and leaving early – is there a knowledge/feel for what “type” of Republican they generally are? Its rare that we ever get rid of the squishes –

    They’re generally squishes. They were probably instructed to leave by their fellow squishes so that Democrats could take control of the House before November.

    I wonder if they faced serious primary challenges, and figured they weren’t going to get re-elected anyway.

    • #20
  21. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    DrewInWisconsin, Œuf (View Comment):

    WI Con (View Comment):

    These members that are retiring and leaving early – is there a knowledge/feel for what “type” of Republican they generally are? Its rare that we ever get rid of the squishes –

    They’re generally squishes. They were probably instructed to leave by their fellow squishes so that Democrats could take control of the House before November.

    I wonder if they faced serious primary challenges, and figured they weren’t going to get re-elected anyway.

    Sort of reminds me of 2018 when 34 repubs bailed. From what I’ve read, it is normal for the party in power to lose seats in the mid-terms. I guess those reps couldn’t stand being in the minority. So rather than stay and fight the Demo-rat’s agenda, they got out of Dodge before sunset. IOW, they were just grifters. 

    Maybe this time it’s different. Maybe they expect to be in the majority but with the hated Orange One as top dog. He would not be so naïve this time around and would call them out by name when they obstructed his efforts and sided with Demo-rats. IOW, grifters and Uniparty hacks. 

    But, I’ve been called a cynical old bastard before and maybe I am. 

    • #21
  22. kedavis Coolidge
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Bryan G. Stephens: I include running for another office in this, but I understand why that happens.

    The honorable ones at least run for a new office that doesn’t officially begin until their current term has ended.

    • #22
  23. DrewInWisconsin, Œuf 🚫 Banned
    DrewInWisconsin, Œuf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Django (View Comment):

    Sort of reminds me of 2018 when 34 repubs bailed. From what I’ve read, it is normal for the party in power to lose seats in the mid-terms. I guess those reps couldn’t stand being in the minority. So rather than stay and fight the Demo-rat’s agenda, they got out of Dodge before sunset. IOW, they were just grifters. 

    Maybe this time it’s different. Maybe they expect to be in the majority but with the hated Orange One as top dog.

    I assume that’s why they left after 2016. They didn’t want to be in the majority and expected to work with The Orange One. 2016 was a surprise, so they abandoned the House after 2016 so the Dems got it in 2018 and the impeachments could get going in earnest. This time they fully expect the Orange One to get back in the Oval Office, so they’re abandoning the House to the Democrats ahead of time so the impeachments can begin as soon as Trump takes office next year.

    The best way to understand how the GOP acts is to assume it’s controlled by Democrats.

    • #23
  24. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    DrewInWisconsin, Œuf (View Comment):

    Django (View Comment):

    Sort of reminds me of 2018 when 34 repubs bailed. From what I’ve read, it is normal for the party in power to lose seats in the mid-terms. I guess those reps couldn’t stand being in the minority. So rather than stay and fight the Demo-rat’s agenda, they got out of Dodge before sunset. IOW, they were just grifters.

    Maybe this time it’s different. Maybe they expect to be in the majority but with the hated Orange One as top dog.

    I assume that’s why they left after 2016. They didn’t want to be in the majority and expected to work with The Orange One. 2016 was a surprise, so they abandoned the House after 2016 so the Dems got it in 2018 and the impeachments could get going in earnest. This time they fully expect the Orange One to get back in the Oval Office, so they’re abandoning the House to the Democrats ahead of time so the impeachments can begin as soon as Trump takes office next year.

    The best way to understand how the GOP acts is to assume it’s controlled by Democrats.

    They play the role of the Washington Generals to the Democrats’ Harlem Globetrotters. 

    • #24
  25. Fritz Coolidge
    Fritz
    @Fritz

    DrewInWisconsin, Œuf (View Comment):

    WI Con (View Comment):

    These members that are retiring and leaving early – is there a knowledge/feel for what “type” of Republican they generally are? Its rare that we ever get rid of the squishes –

    They’re generally squishes. They were probably instructed to leave by their fellow squishes so that Democrats could take control of the House before November.

    I wonder if they faced serious primary challenges, and figured they weren’t going to get re-elected anyway.

    In the wake of several early House GOP retirements (and especially that one rep whose departure was timed so as to leave his seat open under state law, instead of allowing a reliably GOP district to elect a replacement),  I have seen it alleged that the leftist (and “bipartisan” anti-MAGA) plan is to allow a few Democrats in safe districts to join with a sufficient number of so-called RINOS, to elect Hakeem Jeffries to the Speakership.

    It would only last until the next Congress takes office in January 2025, but it would be just in time to pass legislation disqualifying anyone from the presidential ballot who’s been convicted of a felony. The hope is the Stormy Daniels trial will end in President Trump’s conviction, and voila -> no Trump on the 2024 ballot.

    Of course, such a move is blatantly unconstitutional, as the only qualifications for eligibility to the office are stated in the Constitution: natural born citizen and 35 or older. But by the time such a law is litigated and tossed out, we would be well into Obama’s fourth term.

    “No matter how cynical I become, I just can’t keep up.”

    • #25
  26. aardo vozz Member
    aardo vozz
    @aardovozz

    Django (View Comment):

    DrewInWisconsin, Œuf (View Comment):

    WI Con (View Comment):

    These members that are retiring and leaving early – is there a knowledge/feel for what “type” of Republican they generally are? Its rare that we ever get rid of the squishes –

    They’re generally squishes. They were probably instructed to leave by their fellow squishes so that Democrats could take control of the House before November.

    I wonder if they faced serious primary challenges, and figured they weren’t going to get re-elected anyway.

    Sort of reminds me of 2018 when 34 repubs bailed. From what I’ve read, it is normal for the party in power to lose seats in the mid-terms. I guess those reps couldn’t stand being in the minority. So rather than stay and fight the Demo-rat’s agenda, they got out of Dodge before sunset. IOW, they were just grifters.

    Maybe this time it’s different. Maybe they expect to be in the majority but with the hated Orange One as top dog. He would not be so naïve this time around and would call them out by name when they obstructed his efforts and sided with Demo-rats. IOW, grifters and Uniparty hacks.

    But, I’ve been called a cynical old bastard before and maybe I am.

    But possibly not cynical enough 😛

    • #26
  27. EJHill Staff
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    Funny thing… I cannot find one mention of their sacred duty to finish their term and the job they were elected to do from @bryangstephens or @drewinwisconsin in any of the archived posts about the resignations of John Boehner, Paul Ryan or Kevin McCarthy. Guess this must be a new development.

    • #27
  28. DrewInWisconsin, Œuf 🚫 Banned
    DrewInWisconsin, Œuf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    EJHill (View Comment):

    Funny thing… I cannot find one mention of their sacred duty to finish their term and the job they were elected to do from @ bryangstephens or @ drewinwisconsin in any of the archived posts about the resignations of John Boehner, Paul Ryan or Kevin McCarthy. Guess this must be a new development.

    Still can’t acknowledge how specifically he timed his resignation, can you?

    I mean, you had a whole thread in which to address it, after it came up about a hundred times, and you just dodged. 

    Here’s your chance to try again.

    • #28
  29. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    EJHill (View Comment):

    Funny thing… I cannot find one mention of their sacred duty to finish their term and the job they were elected to do from @ bryangstephens or @ drewinwisconsin in any of the archived posts about the resignations of John Boehner, Paul Ryan or Kevin McCarthy. Guess this must be a new development.

    Funny thing, I cannot find one post by @ejhill defending any of those people for not serving out their terms. 

    However, if you looked really, really heard, you would find criticism of Paul Ryan and Kevin McCarthy resigning. They may not have had their own posts. In fact, I I am astounded that you did not know McCarthy was criticized here. It seems incomprehensible that you could have missed people saying such things about McCarty. 

    Indeed, in this post, I have mentioned no one by name. I have made a statement of principle. 

    If you want a condemnation of those men, by all means, I condemn them for not serving our their terms. It was wrong to leave before their terms were out, simply because they did not get their ways. And, since you think threats are a good reason to leave, since these men were not swatted, their leaving is even more reprehensible. 

    How’s that “EJHill”? Good enough for you? I can lambast those men even more if you would like. 

    How about you address the OP one way or another instead of making what amounts to a personal attack of hypocrisy that you have to know does not exist.  

    • #29
  30. Globalitarian Misanthropist Coolidge
    Globalitarian Misanthropist
    @Flicker

    DonG (CAGW is a Scam) (View Comment):

    Barfly (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Scam) (View Comment):

    The higher the office the higher the commitment. Therefore Mike Flynn is bigger coward that Mike Gallagher. Our country would be in a lot better shape had Flynn not surrendered to the Deep State.

    They ran him out. I don’t see how we can blame Flynn. I blame Mr. Personal Honor Mike Pence for undermining the Republic, and PDT for letting it happen.

    Being run out is a choice. You are correct about Pence pushing him out and Trumping siding with Pence over Flynn. Still, Flynn did not fight it and Flynn is the one guy that had a hint at how bad the Deep State was.

    I don’t think we’ll ever know what the conversations with Trump about Flynn were like or included.  I think it’s very likely that both Flynn and, for example, Mike Johnson were “spoken to” and threatened in the “nice job or family you’ve got here” fashion.  It is not for no reason Johnson changed 180 degrees in his views on the border and Ukraine once he became speaker.  Flynn himself has said that there are people in virtually every office of the legislature and the executive branch who at least de facto  work for the intelligence agencies.  I don’t think that it’s right to say that forcing someone out, or accepting being forced out, is really a choice.  Remember, Flynn only pled guilty to FARA violations when they said they were going to go after his son.

    • #30
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