Letter: State Senate stifles democracy
The New Hampshire Senate quietly broke with tradition in a flip-flop that has stifled open, democratic debate in our state. The New Hampshire Legislature has been unique in putting forth and considering a wide spectrum of resolutions and from 2010-2012 considered – and openly discussed without hesitation – dozens of resolutions.
But recently, unknown to most residents, the state Senate instituted a rule that allows it to refuse to hear resolutions passed by the House.
One that the Senate will not hear is HCR 2, a resolution passed by 13 states working to take big money out of politics nationally and restore a one-person-one-vote democracy.
HCR 2 asks the federal government to reconsider Citizens United. We need to have a discussion about the obscene amounts of money controlling elections, drowning out voices of citizens, and undermining our very democracy.
Our senators insist they’re simply streamlining the process by not hearing frivolous resolutions. Does the Senate think that erosion of democracy is a frivolous matter?
We should not allow neighborly discussions and substantive debate to be extinguished by onslaughts of million-dollar television ads and mountains of glossy flyers from obscure addresses. When elections are dominated by attack ad sound bites, the potential voter is left with repulsion for the process. Is that the way to uphold and defend democracy?
Call your senators and urge them to suspend the flip-flop rule and hear HCR 2 or to sign on to the letter to our congressional delegation stating that we the people want big money out of the political process.
DIANE ST. GERMAIN