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Editorial: Tired of gridlock

Published 5:13pm Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Daily Herald editorial

Democrats and Republicans are once again turning a serious issue into a cheap popularity contest.

Former CIA Director David Petraeus’s testimony last week over the Sept. 11, 2012, attack on a U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya was almost immediately spun by legislators from both parties to fit the current narrative of careful fact-checking vs. government incompetence. Republicans question the Obama administration’s response to the attack while Democrats say federal officials gave the facts as they knew it at the time to media outlets.

Yet the fact remains a U.S. Ambassador and three Americans died in Libya two months ago. It appears terrorists with ties to Al-Qaeda coordinated the attack. U.S. officials expressed concerns over the Consulate’s security before the attack took place.

Yet this is fast becoming just another flashpoint issue too far politicized to have anything solved. Benghazi, fiscal cliff, voter ID, debt ceiling — all buzzwords for issues our government needs to address yet can’t, or won’t, all due to a power struggle between political officials. It is no small wonder that retiring public servants like Sen. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, say our nation is tired of the paralyzing gridlock in our highest levels of government.

Instead of officials who are manufacturing crises — and let us not pretend these flashpoint issues are anything but manufactured — why don’t we try focusing our efforts on solving our domestic and foreign issues? Maybe then we could avert tragedies like the one that took place this past September.

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