So, last night, the candidates were asked, interestingly I thought, “What do you think the basic role of the government is in our society?”
Botching this opportunity, I thought, everyone but Ross used their answer to expand upon their usual campaign themes. Patrick, in particular, resorted to some of the most wishy-washy parts of his stump speech saying (in full – 111 words):
Leaving aside for a moment the errors in facts from my friend Christy, I think government is about helping us help ourselves. I don’t think government is there to solve every problem in everybody’s life. I think personal responsibility is absolutely key. But there’s a place alongside personal responsibility for shared responsibility. And there are things we talk about, we talk about how, you know, taxes are your money, and that is right. But it’s also your broken roads and your overcrowded schools, and your broken neighborhoods and neighbors. And it seems to me it’s time for us to take responsibility for that. That is what government is about, I believe.
Personally, I would have loved to see Deval say something like this (129 words):
Thank-you for such a big question here at the end of a campaign that has too often been about small ideas, fear and negativity. Many of my Republican friends seem to think government should simply cuts taxes for the wealthy and let the free market solve all. I worked for many years in business and I understand the essential role it plays. But I am also a proud Democrat who believes government at its best offers equal opportunity and the tools people need to solve their own problems. Government should also guarantee public safety, protect our environment, and strengthen our economy while staying out of our bedrooms and respecting our individual freedoms. Ultimately, our government must do no more but also no less than the people it represents deserve.
But what about the rest of you? Am I just a dreamer to be thinking this is the most important question in politics? Anyone else got a better 100-150 word answer?