I know that I’m not the most savvy political guru on the planet, but I’m a citizen who takes her participation in the process seriously. The way I see it, when I vote I’m participating in the hiring committee. When I hire someone there are some key bits of information I want to know, so I’ve applied that to my recipe for campaign reform.
1. A resume for each candidate – tell me how you’ve spent your education and professional life and what organizations you affiliate with.
2. Tax forms for 5 years – to prevent your telling me you’re poor or middle class when you’re really a millionaire.
3. A statement of your charitable and political giving for the last 5 years – for where your treasure is, your heart is also.
4. Written statements about what you believe to be the main issues to be addressed by your office and how you would hope to address them. Tell me what you think and how you would act in the job. Do not tell me why the other candidates would be bad at the job, tell me why you should have it.
5. A national criminal background check; and, for candidates for federal level office a complete security clearance investigation because you’ll need to be trusted with sensitive national security information should you be hired.
6. Participate in debates and town hall-style meetings, no TV commercials until 45 days before the primary or election day, and only for the 45 days immediately prior to those dates. Feel free to visit people in their communities, but stick to why you should have the office and hearing our concerns and questions.
7. Add a “none of the above” option to the ballot. If there are no acceptable candidates, voters should be able to register their opinion without violating their conscience.
Stir this information together thoroughly and see how it gels with your mind and conscience. Compare to mixtures of other candidates. Then vote to make your hiring decision.