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Our Focus on National Elections is Misguided - We Need to Focus on Local Politicians with National Aspirations

The process for electing the right person to the highest office should begin early on in the political process. Paying more attention to actions of politicians in state and local offices is the key to success.

Hillary Clinton branded bumper stickers sit on a desk at the Ready For Hillary PAC headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, U.S., on Wednesday, Nov. 12, 2014. Veteran Hillary Clinton advisers say she shouldn't accelerate her early 2015 timetable for announcing whether she'll run for president, despite calls from prominent backers of President Barack Obama for her to enter the race soon after last Tuesday's congressional elections. (Bloomberg/Bloomberg via Getty)

After Republicans lost both the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections, it occurred to me that perhaps it’s time to try a new strategy in the hopes of putting America back on the right track.

The news is already abuzz with pre-election speculation about who will run in 2016.

There are rumblings from former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s supporters that they are “Ready for Hillary” to run for president in 2016.

Even elected officials are already throwing their support behind her and are touting their progressive values and policies that are consistent with Clinton’s.

However, Democrats may be scrambling to find others to run in the event Clinton decides she will sit this one out. Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren is a name that is being tossed around.

Hillary Clinton branded bumper stickers sit on a desk at the Ready For Hillary PAC headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, U.S., on Wednesday, Nov. 12, 2014. Veteran Hillary Clinton advisers say she shouldn't accelerate her early 2015 timetable for announcing whether she'll run for president, despite calls from prominent backers of President Barack Obama for her to enter the race soon after last Tuesday's congressional elections. (Bloomberg/Bloomberg via Getty)  Hillary Clinton branded bumper stickers sit on a desk at the Ready For Hillary PAC headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, U.S., on Wednesday, Nov. 12, 2014. Veteran Hillary Clinton advisers say she shouldn't accelerate her early 2015 timetable for announcing whether she'll run for president, despite calls from prominent backers of President Barack Obama for her to enter the race soon after last Tuesday's congressional elections. (Bloomberg/Bloomberg via Getty)

As for the Republicans, currently the “big” names are former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and former 2012 GOP presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, who are meeting in Utah privately to discuss issues concerning their potential upcoming presidential bids in 2016. However, neither has officially committed to running at this point.

Once again, America’s focus is on an upcoming national election and soon all of our efforts will be directed toward electing the man or woman who will ultimately win the coveted title of president of the United States.

It’s politics as usual in America. Emphasis returns to which potential candidate will be chosen for the primaries, how much money will be needed to run a successful campaign, and what strategy will be used to win the presidential election in 2016.

Soon the negative ads will decimate the opposing party, campaign donations will come pouring in, and each candidate will make one campaign stop after another.

It’s typically the same scenario every election and it continues to be a frustrating process.

In the end, one candidate will win and those that voted for the losing candidate will claim that it would have been better if only the candidate… You fill in the blank.

Why do many Americans walk away from the presidential election swearing that they have had enough? I believe it is because America’s main focus is mostly geared toward the bid for the highest office rather than where it should be initially, at the state and local levels.

While a national election is extremely important, the pool of potential candidates that we ultimately select for the highest office, often comes from those people who begin their public service at the lower levels of government.

Granted, the GOP made great headway in the 2014 mid-term election in gaining control over both the House and Senate. However, some Americans’ dreams were immediately quashed when the Speaker of the House, Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio) retained his position even though 60 percent of Republican voters wanted him fired.

The American public’s voice was once again ignored even though America elected these officials.

Had Americans focused on those elected candidates and their real potential for serving in congress years before they aspired to run for congress, the pool of candidates might look quite different today.

The public must take a closer look at the candidates they are sending to Washington, D.C. long before they ever campaign to get there.

Paying close attention to self-serving attitudes and lack of follow through on politicians’ campaign promises at the lower levels of government is a good approach to identifying those who need to be voted out early on.

While true motives may be hard to discern, we certainly will not be able to distinguish altruistic motives of “serving the public” vs. self-centered goals unless we are diligent in closely following the “careers” of our public servants.

I believe that there is a tendency for Americans to discount the importance of some local and state offices as being “benign” and thus, those holding the offices are perceived as powerless to cause widespread “harm” to the American cause.

However, more often than not, it is those same individuals who eventually move on to “bigger and better” positions and may ultimately be those who campaign to represent our interests at the highest levels of government.

We need to begin to get rid of the rogue politicians at the local and state levels before they have a chance of reaching more powerful offices at the top, where they can certainly do more long-term damage to the interests of the American public.

If we continue to put most of our focus and efforts into electing the president then we can expect to see more of the same familiar names and faces coming down future presidential campaign trails.

TheBlaze contributor channel supports an open discourse on a range of views. The opinions expressed in this channel are solely those of each individual author.

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