GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

Letters/My View

October 30, 2012

Letter: Let's break state's one-party stranglehold

To the editor:

As chair of the Groveland Republican Town Committee, I have spent the last four years working to get Republicans, at all levels of government, elected.

Though I could tout the merits of all of the individual Republican candidates on this upcoming general election ballot, there is a larger issue at stake in our Commonwealth.

As voters head to the polls on Nov. 6, I would like them to consider some very important facts. Massachusetts is currently the most one-party state in the country. Democrats control 80 percent of our State House of representatives and 90 percent of our state Senate. Additionally, the governor, lieutenant governor, auditor, treasurer and attorney general.

Why should Massachusetts voters take into consideration these facts? Because there is ample evidence that one-party rule can often create conditions that do not advance good public policy and/or service. Besides providing checks and balances, dissenting voices in government provide greater degree of scrutiny over issues and prevent agendas from being pushed through with little oversight, thus allowing for compromise between the two parties.

Other states with such heavy one-party rule include California and Rhode Island; in which there exists mounting evidence that one-party rule has contributed to some of their cities filing for bankruptcy.

Tragically, our Commonwealth is among the states with the highest debt per capita in the country. We have unfunded pension and health care liabilities in the tens of billions of dollars for state workers, and billions more for municipal workers. These taxpayer liabilities are piled onto massive debt at the MBTA, as well as billions in deferred maintenance to our roads and bridges.

Voters of all political persuasions have an opportunity to have their voices heard on Nov. 6 to help break concentrations of party control through a wide range of races, from the presidential to congressional and the U.S. Senate contests.

It is an opportunity to restore balance to enable public servants to serve their constituents first and not their parties.

LEIGH ANN BERRY,

Chair

Groveland Republican Town Committee

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