17 Nov Get Out of Our House (GOOOH)
A Disinfectant on Congress?
November 17, 2009
By Tom DeWeese
There is a lot of talk across the nation about how to replace sitting members of Congress and restore the Republic as established by the Founders. The conversations usually end in frustration as 95% of incumbents continue to be re-elected, seemingly untouchable inside a system designed to keep them in office.
Most polls indicate that well over 80% of Americans disapprove of the job Congress is doing, yet 95% of incumbents get re-elected every election. Why? Because the process for selecting our representatives is broken. A recent Rasmussen poll said that only 25% of voters insist the election process for Congress should remain the same. Yet, to bring about significant change – indeed to replace a majority of Congress would take a ton of money and organization.
I recently came across a bold yet simple plan to replace all 435 members of the U.S. House of Representatives- and do it as early as 2010. It’s called GOOOH (pronounced like “go”), or Get Out Of Our House, and is a non-partisan national movement that is rapidly gaining momentum. It could very well be the solution to address the disarray in Washington.
Discouraged by the out-of-control federal deficit (now at $11.5 trillion), the complexity of the tax code (67,000 pages), an education system that fails almost 30% of our children (worse than when the Department of Education was formed in 1972), borders that leak like a sieve, and dozens of other failed government programs, GOOOH Founder Tim Cox walked away from a lucrative career in the high tech world to build this system.
According to Cox, “GOOOH is not just another political party. It is a system that will allow you and your neighbors to choose, among yourselves, the person who can best represent your district.” The system allows the people to select their representatives – not just choose between a Republican and a Democrat.
Here’s how his GOOOH plan works:
First, concerned Americans are asked to visit the GOOOH website (www.goooh.com) and sign on as a member – there is no cost to join. Once signed in, members are asked to complete an extensive 100 question survey. Basically, by completing the form, members are creating their own personal platform – their vision of how they want the nation to be. Members must vote “for” or “against” each question. The goal is to have at least 500,000 Americans take this step.
Examples of questions include:
1) Will you vote for or against the Line Item veto?
2) Will you vote for or against a Balanced Budget Amendment?
3) Will you vote for or against the Fair Tax?
4) Will you vote for or against the creation of a National Health Care system?
To become a candidate for Congress through the GOOOH System, one must first become a GOOOH member and complete the Questionnaire. Then they must pass a screening exam to ensure they meet all the requirements for holding office, including citizenship, age, etc.
Then, candidates are asked to sign a “Commitment Letter” confirming, if elected, they will vote according to their questionnaire answers and that they will not accept special interest money should they be elected to Congress.
The final step for candidates before the election process begins, will be to lock in their Questionnaire answers and register for a “Candidate Selection Session” in their own congressional district. As they lock in those answers they are certifying that, if elected to Congress, they will vote on legislation according to those answers. In fact, they will sign a legally binding agreement to that fact. They also pledge not to take special interest money if elected – and if they do – will resign from office within 72 hours. This is the heart of the process.
The goal is to reach at least 500,000 participating members in GOOOH. Once that is accomplished, several actions kick in.
First, after the 500,000 number is reached, members will be asked to contribute a minimum of $100. No money will be requested until that 500,000 threshold is reached. Once collected, however, that money will be sufficient to fund the campaigns of all GOOOH candidates. There will be no need for candidates to raise money. Second, that money will be used to assure the GOOOH candidates are on the ballot in each of the 50 states. And it will be used to finance the candidate selection process.
Finally, after the 500,000 members are signed on the candidate selection process will begin.
Members will be randomly sorted into pools of ten within their district. The pools will meet around the nation simultaneously at predetermined locations on consecutive Saturday mornings. Each pool of ten will select two congressional candidates to advance to the next round. Those selections will be made mainly by assessing the Candidate Questionnaires to determine their positions on the issues – no room for campaign double speak.
Advancing candidates will be randomly assigned into a new pool within their district. With 500,000 members there would be 50,000 pools of ten, all meeting on the same day sometime after March, 2010 in round one of the process. The pool selection process will be repeated four or five times until one person is ultimately chosen in the final round – that person will become the GOOOH candidate for the congressional district. The process will be repeated in all 435 Congressional Districts across the nation. And those candidates will run on the ballot against the incumbents and party choices, supplied with sufficient funds and a network of volunteers to help their campaigns.
By allowing participants to choose who can best represent them, true “citizen” representatives, rather than career politicians, will be selected, just as our Founding Fathers intended. By allowing participants to define their own platform they will not be bound to a political party that will tell them how to vote. The legally binding agreement that each candidate signs before they are selected will put accountability back into the system.
According to Cox, GOOOH has been created to allow the modern day incarnations of Madison, Franklin, and Jefferson to step forward and return our nation to greatness. It seeks men and women with honor and integrity who will lead the effort. GOOOH is a revolutionary plan for selecting our representatives. It takes the money out of politics. It puts an end to partisan behavior and will eliminate block-voting along party lines. It will replace the career politicians.
It’s an interesting idea in a sea of frustration. I recommend you take a few minutes to check out www.GOOOH.com and learn why 25,000 patriots already have signed on to the plan. The request is simple at this time: become a member of the system, which takes nothing more than an email address. Then, you are asked to recruit your family and friends to join the cause. The project is completely funded by Tim Cox and he is quick to point out they do not need funding at this time. Their goal is to first get to 500,000 members.
The two parties have convinced most Americans that they are in control. They use scare tactics to convince voters that supporting independent candidates will only result in putting the “other” party in power. They have successfully used fear to scare people into how they must vote. The results speak for themselves. Now, there is an alternative. Will America be brave enough to take this unusual opportunity to fight this battle and truly change the system? Only time will tell.
Tom DeWeese is the President of the American Policy Center and the Editor of The DeWeese Report. TThe DeWeese Report is now available online, for more information click here.