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Tugger
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Should politicians keep their promises?

Sat Feb 06, 2021 5:55 pm

Simple question: Are politicians required to "keep promises" they made during campaigning?

I honestly don't think so, I think they need to be allowed to compromise or tweak and make changes and not be castigated after being elected when now working for all the people they serve, not just those that voted for them. Of course that doesn't mean it is OK for them to completely flip or renounce are just stop working toward what they committed to. Just that there needs to be allowance made for "how things are" versus "But you promised!".

And this needs to be personally consitently applied whether it is "your party" or the one you did not support.

But that is me.

Tugg
 
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T18
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Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Sat Feb 06, 2021 7:31 pm

Maybe not keep but they should be held to account to have made effort and not just pay something lip service. Frankly I wish instead of making wild promises that they would just state what thier goal are and how they want to get there.

However if you promise to vote X on an issue, and then do not you better have a great reason or else I would not again vote for you.
 
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casinterest
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Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Sat Feb 06, 2021 8:16 pm

Politicians should lead. They can try to keep promises, but they need to keep everyone in mind. Not just their donors when they make decisions.
 
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Aesma
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Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Sat Feb 06, 2021 8:31 pm

I agree with you Tugger, but the thing is, most of the times "how things are" was known during the campaign, so you can't get away with saying you can't fulfill your promises after all, when nothing has fundamentally changed.

For example the previous French president, François Hollande, promised some left-wing economic policies, like taxing the rich more (up to 75% of their income). This turned out to not be in accordance with the constitution and thus was amended down to 66% by the constitutional court, still, it was enough to cause some issues, and more importantly, it was the opposite of what was really needed to help the French economy. After a couple of years he did a complete u-turn, scrapped this, and went in the right direction, with simpler labor laws for example, however not only did he lose much of his left-wing support in the population, he even lost the support of part of his own party (the Socialist Party), to the point he figured it was better not to run for reelection as he wouldn't make it to the 2nd round.

What is remarkable is that president Macron basically campaigned on the same direction Hollande was going (he was minister of the economy by then so not really surprising) and he won the election on that platform ! So flip-flopping seems to be seen as a bigger sin than keeping to your lane, even in the wrong direction.

Another example is Brexit of course, "project fear" is happening right now, as expected, despite Brexiteers promises of unicorns.
 
Dieuwer
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Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Sat Feb 06, 2021 11:12 pm

I would like to see term limits: 4 to 8 years and you are out. And perhaps more Direct Democracy like referenda.
 
petertenthije
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Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Sun Feb 07, 2021 12:08 am

I don’t think politicians should be kept to their promises. Real life has a tendency to intercept good intentions.

But i do think politicians should be realistic. So no bs like “Mexico will pay for the wall”, “leaving the EU will free up billions for the NHS” or “the corona curfew will be done before the month’s over”.

If a politician says something that anyone with half a braincell can tell is nonsense, then the media should clearly state so. Any complaints about media bias that results from that should just be laughed at.
 
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seb146
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Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Sun Feb 07, 2021 12:59 am

Politicians make promises all the time but end up not following through completely because other people get involved or the issue is more shades of grey rather than black and white.
 
cpd
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Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Sun Feb 07, 2021 5:13 am

Yes, make them keep promises. If they cannot do so, and don’t have a valid reason (like some unforeseen pandemic) then they should go to prison.

They get away with so much rubbish time after time.
 
Virtual737
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Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Sun Feb 07, 2021 6:11 am

As a first step, I'd be happy if they didn't make promises that they knew they couldn't keep at the time they made them. Knowing what you can and cannot promise is a reasonable marker of both intelligence and integrity.
 
sbworcs
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Joined: Fri Oct 21, 2005 11:19 pm

Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Sun Feb 07, 2021 11:38 am

I think that maybe, when manifestos are created things should be broken into 3 sections:

1. Promises - will definitely do with some form of penalty if they don't
2. High list priorities
3. The rest
 
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Aesma
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Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Sun Feb 07, 2021 12:52 pm

We're talking about democracies here, there is no need for threats, if people aren't happy about a politician, they change them. Granted, in some countries it's more difficult than in others, leading to some nasty people still clinging to power...

One idea pushed by a party here in France is to form committees of citizens, chosen randomly, to decide if politicians are doing a good job : if not, they're fired. I find this totally ridiculous and unworkable.
 
Sokes
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Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Mon Feb 08, 2021 11:27 am

Dieuwer wrote:
I would like to see term limits: 4 to 8 years and you are out. And perhaps more Direct Democracy like referenda.

In four years the effect of policies may not be visible.
If labour gets more rights and share of produced wealth, some industries carry on for some more years before going bust.
I don't say it is always bad to give labour more rights. Britain before Thatcher definitely overdid it. But German trade surplus today suggests increasing labour rights is indeed needed.

In India Modi was elected 2014 and reelected since. He builds thousands of kilometer freight double track rail corridors. They didn't get ready till election. Similar harbours are a priority. These measures are long term and a condition to make industrialisation beyond IT possible. The effect becomes visible the next or second next government.

Bill Clinton repealed Glass Steagall in 1999. But it took till 2008 to see the effect of his policy.

So I think elections should be every eight years. It becomes obvious which policies caused what. A two term limit for a prime minister sounds reasonable.

I also like referendums. But IIRC in Germany tax as subject is excluded. Should referendums be only possible on a local or maybe state level as in Germany or also central level like in Switzerland?

Since a politician usually depends on a coalition partner and/ or has to deal with two chambers or other division of powers one can't oblige him to stick to election promises.
But even if one could enforce it I'm not in favour. My trust in the electorate is not so high. Imagine an election in an economic crisis. Often the IMF in exchange for badly needed credit forces badly needed reforms. That happened in India in 1991. That was unpopular at the time. But since then India is improving.
The undemocratic IMF saved India from its democracy.
 
GDB
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Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Mon Feb 08, 2021 12:34 pm

Well the Dupes here (The clue is in the name partly, the DUP), not only trusted a massively untrustworthy person even by political standards, in all aspects of his rotten life, they even forgot the lessons of their own history (which they are usually known for being obsessed by), as well as ignoring their own electorate in their part of the UK;

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... ion-brexit
 
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DIRECTFLT
Posts: 2678
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Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Tue Feb 09, 2021 1:56 am

Biden is not going to fight for a $15 minimum wage in the Relief Package.

https://youtu.be/PxSnHXpcMng
 
prebennorholm
Posts: 7165
Joined: Tue Mar 21, 2000 6:25 am

Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Tue Feb 09, 2021 3:09 am

Tugger wrote:
Simple question: Are politicians required to "keep promises" they made during campaigning?

For Gods sake, no. NO !!!
If politicians keep their promises, then we will all have to pay at least 200% income tax.
 
QF7
Posts: 33
Joined: Fri Aug 16, 2019 11:42 pm

Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Thu Feb 11, 2021 8:21 am

There is an old saying: “Circumstances alter cases.”

If truly unforeseen circumstances occur then I don’t think politicians should be rigidly held to a promise if there is an obviously sensible course of action to be taken in response.

In other words, if it’s reasonably out of their control, then I’m fine with giving them a mulligan.

On the other hand if they make promises that nothing is preventing them from fulfilling then yes, they should be held to those. One in particular that galls me is the endless parade of candidates who promise to only serve for two terms (or whatever) and yet 20 or 30 years later they are filing for reelection yet again.
 
airmann91
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2021 10:03 pm

Re: Should politicians keep their promises?

Tue Feb 16, 2021 10:07 pm

I agree with the basic idea of ​​most of the posts. In particular, a certain classification of the things the politicians say before they are elected makes sense in my opinion. Many people form a judgment on the basis of such promises and decide whether to vote for someone or not. I mean that is normal because what else should you base your opinion on, you often only see how the politician presents himself.

As already mentioned, a division into things that they want to do (and then ideally should definitely do) and goals that they are trying to implement (on a general basis, longer-term goals) could be a sensible approach

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