Personal Touch Missing in Politics

Means everything.

Means everything.

I  don’t mean to pick on US Senator Bill Nelson.
He’s a nice man. I know this for a fact having dined with him a few times when I was an elected official. I enjoyed his stories about space and his insight about life in Washington.
But I’m going to use Sen. Nelson as an example because he’s one of the good guys and well he disappointed me last week with a canned response to a message left for him through his website.
We reached out to Florida’s senior senator on behalf of a Delray Beach resident who has over 50 years of experience at the bleeding edge of science and biotech. My friend is the real deal and he’s concerned about Zika. He believes the virus will ultimately be a bigger challenge to society than HIV. That’s a big statement. And it’s not being made lightly. My friend has given this a lot of thought.
His business works globally with governments, pharmaceutical companies, physicians and researchers. He saw an interview with Senator Nelson who talked about the need for research dollars to be applied to the Zika problem. He wants to help. Not because he’s seeking a government handout but because he fears this problem. He wants in the game because he thinks he can make a difference.
And we received a canned response.
Now I’m sure Senator Nelson receives a large volume of correspondence–too much to handle personally. But an effective system should sift through the mountain and separate the wheat from the chaff.
My friend should be able to contact his Senator on this terribly important issue and get more than a “thank you we value your input” response.
It’s why people feel disconnected from their representatives in Washington. If you take the time to craft a letter, outline your credentials and ask for consideration I would argue that you deserve more than a canned response.
I’m sure they all do it. But they shouldn’t.
There has to be a better way.

We will try another method to see if we can get a little more than a polite brush off.
One more try to see if someone will listen. We’ll see.
Congress is about as popular as Zika these days. Sadly, they have earned their low approval ratings with partisan bickering, grandstanding and a sense that if you don’t give or raise tons of cash your voice doesn’t matter.
Our politics are broken on so many levels. Problems go unsolved, constituents go unheard and voters are angry.
Again I’m fond of Senator Nelson. He’s a good man.
But when a Floridian reaches out and comes equipped with credentials and ideas somebody in Washington ought to listen.
It’s just that simple.

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