Panel Series Examines Mid-Term Election Results

May 10, 2010

The Center for Public Service at Mount Union College presented a Mid-Term Election 2006 Panel Series on November 14 in Presser Recital Hall.

The Center welcomed speakers Daryl Revoldt from the Ohio Department of Development, Paul Mastriacovo from Kent State University, Tom Harmon of Canton City Government, and Dr. William Cunion, chair of the Department of Political Science at Mount Union.

Each panel speaker presented a different topic dealing with the mid-term elections that took place on November 7.

Revoldt began by exploring why the Republican Party was defeated. Revoldt drove home the fact that the party struggled with economic decline and corruption while also ignoring the responsibility of situational awareness. He stated that the results were a type of 'perfect storm' and that this political reverse was not unexpected.

'Basic unaddressed issues provoked actions and not politics; it left voters leaning towards any candidate who promised change,' said Revoldt.

Mastriacovo spoke on bi-partisanship in a divided country.

'There are A and Z views, but there are many letters in between. We have to get over thinking that there are only two options,' he said.

He also commented on a hopeful scenario that could occur now that both parties presence is evident in Washington, D.C. 'The president now has the opportunity to be a uniter and not a divider,' said Mastriacovo.

Harmon spoke on education in Ohio. He stated that the budget percentage earmarked for education is 27% of total budget funding.

'100 million dollars from tax payers goes towards the financing of charter schools. There's something wrong about that,' Harmon said. 'The newly elected Governor, Ted Strickland, will be a part of the reformation of school funding in Ohio.'

Cunion addressed the topic of Direct Democracy. Specifically, he spoke of initiatives, which are possible changes that the public can introduce and then decide on the outcome through voting.

'Voters are smart, but we have lives' said Cunion. 'I believe that the idea of initiatives does not work in our form of government.' Problems cited specific to voting and initiatives include the fact that there is no deliberation, issues may be too demanding, wording may be confusing and initiatives are sometimes misleading.

'Representative democracy is what works best,' he concluded.

Mount Union College established the Center for Public Service to prepare students for careers in public service. The Center is a response to the urgent and ongoing need for additional public servants in our federal, state and local government.

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