When have you felt let down by a politician you believed in?

Former Sen. John Edwards is standing trial on charges relating to secret payments allegedly made to keep an extramarital affair secret. Before the affair was revealed, Edwards was a popular politician with a promising future. Today’s Question: When have you felt let down by a politician you believed in?

  • Non-Sequitur

    Once upon a time, the Republicans were the party of the rich and the Democrats were the party of the working man. Somewhere along the way, as the Democrats took their long-standing power for granted, they started losing the working people with some of their environmental and social policies that hurt factory and resource workers. Meanwhile, the Republicans hit on the key to getting actual votes, rather than just dollars, which was to become the party of Jesus.

    This is a huge generalization, but in general poor people vote Republican because they believe Republicans will enforce what they see as traditional Christian family values. Something like 40% of Americans believe Jesus will return to Earth soon. Don’t discount the political impact of that kind of faith, once a party has managed to associate itself with it.

  • Kurt

    But…….I thought Obama was the ONE we were waiting for. He’s a Republican??!!??

  • Clark

    John Edwards was beyond sleazy. A wealthy democrat who already achieved wealth whose goal was to prevent others from accumulating wealth. Hope he and bubba share a jail cell for many years.

    Actually, I am releived our current clueless community activist president is failing to deliver on his expanded moocher entitlement agenda.

    “Fairness is the new watch word of the extreme radical left.”

  • Hiram


  • Mark

    Although I am a democrat, I had a lot of respect for Colin Powell–enough to believe him when he told us he knew Iraq had WMD. He was either a liar or a fool, and I was a fool to believe him.

  • Steve the Cynic

    I’ve never believed in politicians, so have never felt let down.

  • Sue de Nim

    The Vietnam War and Watergate. Since then I’ve learned not to believe in politicians of any stripe.

  • Tom Bernhardt

    A year and a half ago, my wife went to a U of Mn board of regents meeting as part of the U Lead program. Our youngest daughter was an Ag Ed student at UM Crookston and had heard rumors that the U wanted to shut down the whole Ag program at Crookston.

    Bonnie approached several Regents and they all swore that no decisions had been made and “I would not worry about that at this point.”

    She was very concerned and asked them to clarify, as our daughter said that she did not think she would be able to finish her degree in Crookston and she did not want to go to the St Paul campus. She was assured by every Regent she spoke with that our daughter would be able to finish her degree, as the current discussion was for long-range planning.

    The very next day, the board announced they were closing the Ag program at Crookston. She approached 2 of the regents to ask the about the conversations she had the day before and they replied that St Paul had a fine Ag program and she could finish her degree there.

    We decided that after the board lied in direct conversation, that we could not trust anything they said and our daughter transferred to the UW at River Falls.

    Even though Ag Ed is one of the U’s most profitable programs, the only place to get an AgEd degree now, is the St Paul campus. Now it is actually the only place that a person can get any kind of Ag degree.

  • Jim G

    At one time in the distant past I expected my elected representatives to vote for policies that improved the lives of all their constituents and made us all stronger. Now I see that was an illusion. It’s all about power: winners and losers. Who cares about the country and the dreams of everyday Americans? I’m tempted to write – no one. But really I’m still looking… can’t we all be winners someday?

  • Bill

    Obama let me down.

    He said he was going to get US out of the wars, and instead he has increased the numbers in Afghanistan and created a presence of over 50,000 contractors in Iraq. He has bombed innocent people around the world including American citizens without due process.

    He has done nothing about Israels nuclear weapons and instead wants war with Iran.

  • GregX

    As often as I’ve disappointed myself for imagining that claims and promises made in June are still valid and unaffected by the changes in the world in July through March. In fact I far more upset by politicians who are unwilling to admit that they change their minds. It is the surest sign they are puppets of power and not thoughtful individuals.

  • Ann

    I feel let down by Pawlenty, Bush, and all of the people in the Republican Party that are endorsing Romney. I can’t identify with a candidate who believes he can become God and get his own planet. He gives millions to a church that teaches that this is what God did and that the members can do this.They believe that Jesus was created.We also need someone who can communicate and inspire people as a world leader should. Romney can’t even inspire a clear majority in primaries and caucuses.

  • http://ofbuckleyandbeatles.wordpress.com/ Drae

    I felt let down when Jon Huntsman exited the race after New Hampshire, but I didn’t blame him. I still believe he’d make a great president.

    And even though I’m not a democrat, I was let down by Obama when, just days into his presidency, he dismissed discussing legalization of marijuana by saying we couldn’t grow our way out of our problems. I knew right then he wasn’t the change agent everyone had hoped he be.

  • Mark in Freeborn

    This is two questions wrapped in one: When have I felt let down by a politician? Every time one opens his or her mouth. When have I believed in a politician? Never, once they have decided that he or she IS a politician.

  • Rich in Duluth

    I try to be realistic about political rhetoric. The promises politicians make show their political leanings. That is what I vote on. Whether they actually follow through on the promises depends on factors, often, beyond their control. Understanding that moderates my disappointment.

    If you are expecting a politician to follow through, you are setting yourself up for disappointment. Politicians are fallible people. I believe in a political philosophy, not in the people who voice that philosophy.

  • Gary F

    Sure, happens all the time. That’s why the Tea Party started.

    Running as a conservative but then governing like a liberal because it’s the easier path. Give out more government paid for with someone else’s money. Get more people addicted to a government program so they are dependent on you for their livelihood and then have to vote for them.

    I don’t let politicians let me down any more, because I don’t trust them from either party.

  • Matt B

    Mark Dayton. I voted for him and generally believe he has exceeded people’s expectations of him as governor. His stance on the Vikings stadium issue is nearly unforgivable though. I know he doesn’t write the actual bills, but it’s on him to negotiate a better deal for taxpayers. I’m not naive, I know it will take a good chunk of public dollars to get this done. The reason the current bill isn’t going anywhere is because it’s a bad deal. We can do better! Get Zygi and the NFL to put in at least 50%, and lean less heavily on Minneapolis’ already strained budget and high downtown taxes and we might have something we can get behind.

  • Philip

    It’s a curious question. I have to wonder who in their right mind would want to be a politician?

  • Mary

    I felt let down by Jim Ramsted. He was the only Republican I have ever supported election after election. He always put his constituents first and represented Minnesota in a very professional manner. At the end of his career he started putting the Republican party ahead of Minnesotans. That really disappointed me. I couldn’t support him any longer.

  • Alison

    I feel let down by RT Rybak. He really seems to connect with me on so many issues. He understands his city and the peole who live there. However I am truly disappointed with his tenacity in trying to take money from working class taxpayers and give it to the millionaires and billionaires who will reap the profits from professional sports facilities.

  • http://www.foundingfathersforum.com Jefferson

    Obama let me down when he signed into law the heathcare bill with an individual mandate after he campaigned against it in the primary. That was one of the few points where he differed from Hillary and one of the main reasons I voted for him in the primary.

  • JasonB

    After Jesse Ventura’s election. He started as someone who spoke honestly and passionately about being an outsider and a real alternative to the two major parties. He stated that he was “unbeholden” by political favoritism or special interests. He ended up as just another politician.

    I had hopes that he might actually make a difference. Instead he used his position as a self-promotion tool for monetary gain.

  • Steve the Cynic

    Obama seems to be a big disappointment to two groups of people. The first is ideological liberals who were disappointed that he turned out to be quite moderate (which they would have known had they actually listened to his campaign speeches). The second is Republicans who crossed over and voted for him in Democratic primaries, thinking he’d be less electable than Hillary.

  • Owen

    They all seem to campaign as representatives and wake up the morning after election day to discover that they think they have become leaders.

    Then they find that getting re-elected requires promising to give things to their constituents that must be taken from someone else. So voters must accept blame for wanting politicians to “bring home the bacon.”

    Do you think anyone would get elected who said, “I promise no goodies, only to be principled and strictly follow the constitution.”

  • Stephen Seidel

    Many years ago, I had a political science professor who said, “The greatest challenge for an elected official is to be able to disappoint people at a rate they can tolerate.” In other words, disappointment from elected officials is a given – in part because they overpromise to get elected, and in part (mostly) because the electorate has unrealistic expectations of them. The public can handle some level of disappointment in their elected officials; but once that level of disappoinment crosses the line beyond which the public can tolerate, the elected official loses his/her ability to be effective.

  • http://www.foundingfathersforum.com Jefferson

    Steve the Cynic – [Obama seems to be a big disappointment to two groups of people. The first is ideological liberals who were disappointed that he turned out to be quite moderate (which they would have known had they actually listened to his campaign speeches). The second is Republicans who crossed over and voted for him in Democratic primaries, thinking he’d be less electable than Hillary.] *** You might think that but I was actually a Democrat until that election in 2008. It was right around that time between the primary and the general election when I stopped being a Democrat…honestly I’m still an independent since many of my views are spread across both political parties. Lately I have found myself trying to be as intellectually honest as possible and I find myself looking at both Democrats and Republicans as hypocrites. With the Democrats they will never cut budgets and never come out with a solution that involves a cut to any social program…with Republicans I despise their attempts to make gay marriage illegal and their social issue views appear nonsensical they seem to be based on religion rather than logic. Both sides need to reflect upon their positions and work together to accomplish at least what they agree on.

  • Steve the Cynic

    Why ever would you think that comment was directed at you, Jefferson? It’s true, given your current ideological stance, that it strains credulity to think that you were ever a Democrat, but no, I was not thinking specifically about your post. I’ve found that taking impersonal comments personally is not good for one’s mental health.

  • Lawrence

    The Republican Party let me down during the 2000 election, and hasn’t really stopped. We can’t prove it, but George Bush and his brother Jeb found a way to illegally swing Florida in favor of George. Republicans USED to stand up for public schools AND college universities. They don’t do that any more, passing the laughable No Child Left Behind Act which did exactly the opposite, left many, mostly students of color, behind. The Party stopped, I mean came to a screeching stop, debating President Obama about the issues and resorted to calling him names – socialist, Muslim, incompetent, etc., and they haven’t stopped since. I still have really no idea how the Republicans intend to increase our economy and save jobs, because EVERYTHING they have said has been Obama can’t do this, and he can’t do that. They CONTINUE to suggest our electoral process allows too many fraudlent voters to vote, EVEN THOUGH THERE IS NO EVIDENCE OF THAT IN ANY STATE AND THE REPUBLICAN PARTY HAS GREATLY BENEFITTED FROM THE SO-CALLED FLAWED SYSTEM IN 2000, 2004, AND 2010. Every one who owns a business complains health insurance is TOO HIGH. But, when the Republicans had a chance to reduce health care costs, the Party balked and called the rest of us Americans socialists. George Bush AND Rick Perry tried in vain to get Republicans to Latin Americans. Instead, the Republicans have settled on the ever-so-genocidal round them up and kick em out policy, which will make us look really bad internationally. For more than a decade Republicans in Minnesota kept claiming government was too big and spent too much. Yet, every year since then, we keep hearing how the state is IN REALLY BAD DEBT, and how many institutions, BEYOND THE SCHOOL SYSTEM, now have a difficult time doing even the basic things, like shoveling snow. But, what’s worse, a majority of the people keep believing this stuff instead of actually measuring the facts. They keep calling people like me, leftist and liberal, instead of opening their eyes and asking themselves these questions, like if our voting system is really that bad, and how did Republicans gain both sides of the Legislature for the first time in 38 years?

  • http://www.foundingfathersforum.com Jefferson

    Steve the Cynic – [Why ever would you think that comment was directed at you, Jefferson? It’s true, given your current ideological stance, that it strains credulity to think that you were ever a Democrat, but no, I was not thinking specifically about your post. I’ve found that taking impersonal comments personally is not good for one’s mental health.] *** You might be surprised to realize I was once a Democrat…I voted for both Gore and Kerry. I was raised by two Democrats and quite honestly I bought into the whole Democrat ideology until I started working for a private business (which speaks volumes about the ability for academia to push young minds into the Democratic party). I didn’t get offended, it’s just that you posted your comment just 2 after comments after I posted mine and your comment was posted just as mine was read on the air…plus your last comment where you said “it strains credulity to think that you were ever a Democrat” makes me think even more that it was directed towards my comment. You might not think “taking impersonal comments personally” is not good for your mental health but I have to disagree, I believe it is very valuable for creativity, imagination and problem solving to engage in debate. Especially when you basically admitted the comments were meant for me…I don’t take it “personally” as if I’m offended, I simply look at it as a moment to explain and for you and I (and everyone else participating) to learn something from that conversation.

  • Steve the Cynic

    Methinks thou dost protest too much, “Jefferson.” When I catch myself taking impersonal comments personally, I find it helpful to ask myself what I’m in denial about and to question whether I’m not thinking of myself as more important than I really am.

    So, you jumped from one ideology to another, as if you’re atoning for your previous mistake, huh? I’ve got news for you: the opposite of one mistake is often another mistake. The problem is political ideology per se, not whether you’ve got the right one.

  • Mindy

    I’ve never believed in a politician.

  • david

    You can be disappointed by narsisistic gas bags unless you enter into the arrangements with some sort of preconceived notions. That or you wrote a ridiculously large check to them and thought you would gain something in return.

    I guess you get what you pay for.

  • Ron C

    I was disapointed when Colin Powell didn’t resign in protest after “W” decided to invade Iraq when everyone knew there were no WMD’s and “W” was lying when he said “They (Muslims) hate us because we’re free”.