Comments about ‘Readers' forum: Bennett ousting wrong’

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Published: Tuesday, Dec. 28 2010 12:00 a.m. MST

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Murray, UT

Getting rid of him was the best thing that has happened to Utah since we ousted Cannon. He voted like a Democrat for every spending bill he could find and for the Dream act and all other illegal alien amnesties, he simply didn't represent Utah. Most of all, he had a condescending attitude and totally ignored any opinion but his own. Talking to him was like talking to a wall, he knew best and everyone else was wrong. The only regret is that it didn't happen sooner. He broke his own promise on length of service as well, It was the right decision all the way.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

The caucus system worked. Mr. Bennett did not appeal to those who participate in politics in Utah. He may have thought that he represented Utah. He may have thought that he was bigger than life, but the real fact is that Utah had had enough of Mr. Bennett and his brand of politics.

How long are his supporters going to try to re-write history? Mr. Bennett served for eighteen years. Everything that he did is on record. Every vote is on record. Whether you agree or disagree with his voting record, it is what it is.

We have a caucus system in Utah that all of Mr. Bennett's influence and all of his campaign money and all of his emails and all of his letters couldn't change.

He sent me email after email and letter after letter telling me how important it was to convince people in my precinct to vote for him AFTER I had repeatedly notified him and his campaign that I would be supporting Mr. Lee.

His problem is that he didn't listen to anyone. He thought that everyone was listening to him.

Burke, VA

"...he...reached across the aisle to cooperate with Democrats to bring to pass legislation that he felt might benefit the country and Utah. In other words, he recognized that politics is "the art of the possible,..."

Ken - I think you hit the nail on the head in describing what a statesman really is and does. Thanks for writing.

Springville, UT

The tea party would have destroyed the Articles of Confederation, too. We would have a continent with small nations, less powerful than the countries of the Balkans today. Bennett got it, and now Utah has a new Senator who is in la-la land and will actually contribute to the demise of the Constitution because he thinks it should be viewed in the eyes of the world of 1787, which is a misconception as well. What a mess.

Kamas, UT

Quinn Monson at BYU did a written survey of the delegates to the nominating convention who "ousted" Bennett. The facts:

23% attended caucuses for the first time
33.4% had attended more than six in the past
50.7% were first time delegates
72.5% went to get elected as delegates
82% said there were no "straw polls" in their precinct
66% said they felt no obligation to vote for a particular candidate
50.6% said they stated their preference at the caucus
90% opposed stimulus bills, Obamacare, cap and trade
98% felt the country was "pretty seriously" off track
42% described themselves as tea party advocates
42% did not advocate tea party positions
15% had no opinion
75% reported they had given no money to the tea party movement
62% wanted more policies reflective of the Constitution
74% wanted less government intervention
95% used the Internet more than once a day
75% were males
64% were over age 45
62% considered themselves "strong Republicans"
36% were college graduates
39% had post-graduate degrees
90% were Mormons
92% were married
79% made > $55,000 per year

Bob Bennett was not "ousted" by tea party radicals -- they were his own people.

the greater outdoors, UT

Everyone is "appalled". A word only used in letters to the editor and in the comment section.

What was so laudable about Bennett's 18 years in Congress?

Do you have an issue with the reasons people vote?

Do you have an issue with people disagreeing with the legislation that Bennett "felt" would benefit Utah and the country?

What principles are you willing to compromise for your definition of progress?

Has it ever occurred to you that maybe most in Utah don't agree with your interpretation of progress?

No one needs to brush up on history regarding COTUS. What we have is what we have in COTUS is the most important document for any country, ever. What is it that you don't like about COTUS that makes you in favor of ignoring it?

You are embarrassed in how Bennett was ousted? Why? Because the political system worked and you didn't like the outcome?

Were you not able to convince your neighbors to elect you as a delegate?

I sent letter after letter advising Bennett that it would be better for him to retire gracefully than to be ousted at convention. His arrogance wouldn't allow that.

Hank Pym

re: ECR | 7:23 a.m. Dec. 28, 2010

Heaven forbid politics be about compromise and building a consensus.

Ralph West Jordan
Taylorsville, UT

Ken hit it right on the head! It was a big mistake ousting Bennett. My grandson works in the office of a sitting Rep. Senator from another state. He says that Bennett enjoyed a high reputation from both sides of the isle (the sky is falling, the sky is falling) and the majority of the Senators feel like Utah has made a serious blunder. So now it looks like the "chicken little group" wants to go after Hatch! Great, we then will have Lee and probably Chaffetz, I can't imagine a more sterling pair. Fric and Frac, Great!

Salt Lake City, UT

I would like to see Bob Bennett run as an Independent against Orrin Hatch. I believe he could do to the closed convention system in Utah what Lisa Murkowski did in Alaska. Freed of needing to bend to the far right, he would be far more attractive to voters in the middle.

the greater outdoors, UT

@Ralph: "...the majority of the Senators feel like Utah has made a serious blunder."

You make a serious blunder in making your comment and that is you think Utahns care what the other Senators in Congress think about who we vote for. We don't!

@Grover: still whining about a "closed convention" system, eh? There are other states that are probably more to your liking regarding politics. Maybe you should seek out one of them so that you will be happier in life.

Far right? Exactly what is that?

Middle? Exactly what is that?

Murkowski is the perfect example of what is wrong with Congress. She thinks she is entitled to the seat. She got beat in the primary not a caucus. Then she got the state to disregard its own laws so she could get elected to retain her power.

If Bennett couldn't get all he thought he needed to do for the state done in 18 years, 6 more wouldn't have mattered. Hatch has been there 30+ and will be ousted in 2012.

There is nothing wrong with fresh meat now and then. Afterall, Bennett was once a freshman too.

Cedar Hills, UT

We shouldn't even be arguing about this...If only Bennett would have lived up to his promise not to become a 'lifer' in congress. Term Limits!!!

Eric Samuelsen
Provo, UT

"Bob Bennett had a condescending attitude, and ignored every opinion but his own"

In other words, Bob Bennett, a man of mature and seasoned judgment, voted his conscience on the issues. He ignored outspoken zealots (like most of the respondents here, in this forum).

Quinn Monson's survey shows how extreme caucus delegates were, how out of touch with most Americans, how bizarrely partisan. 90% opposed stimulus bills, Obamacare, cap and trade
98% felt the country was "pretty seriously" off track. Anyone opposed to the economic stimulus has just frankly not been paying attention: the Bush/Obama stimulus bills saved our country. Cap and trade is a conservative, market oriented approach to environmental issues. As for 'Obamacare,' those opposed to it generally oppose it based on provisions that are just flat not in the bill.

So what happened? A bunch of ignorant, old, rich, white, Mormon men decided they didn't like Bennett based on misinformation spread by Fox News, Glenn Beck, and tea party-generated viral emails. As a result, we're stuck with Constitutional Scholar Mike Lee for the next six years. Yippee.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

If Bennett's ousting is "Wrong"... then the Constitution is "Wrong". Because he was ousted using the exact procedure the Constitution prescribed for selecting or ousting our representatives.

If the will of the people (the vote)... is "Wrong"... then yes, I guess you are right... it's wrong to respect the vote of the people.

Brian the engineer
Columbus, OH

Thanks for the letter.

I returned home from the caucus meeting having been "enlightened" about why Bennett needed to ousted, and as such, anti-Bennett delegates were elected.

It was weeks later that I learned that many of the things preached at the caucus were simply not true, and if I could turn back time, I would have been much more of a Bennett supporter.

Hopefully Lee will learn a few things from Bennett and try to work to benefit everyone, and not just one party.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Brian the engineer | 12:41 p.m.

If you are so uninformed that you were open to being mislead by information at a caucus meeting... you should be ashamed of yourself.

You can NEVER disasociate yourself from your responsibility to get information from MANY trusted sources to determine for YOURSELF what the "facts" or the "Truth" is. You can never divest yourself of the responsibility to get the facts for yourself. You can't just conveniently blame someone at the caucus meeting!

It's YOUR job to get the facts... and not just believe everything you hear at a caucus meeting, or on the TV, or on the radio.

Find people (REAL PEOPLE you can talk with at length and ask questions and share and discuss responses with)! Don't just trust your caucus, or the nightly news, or a guy on talk radio.

It's your own fault if you think a guy at your caucus mislead you into thinking you wanted Bennett to go, when you realy didn't. Don't be such a push-over.

Ralph West Jordan
Taylorsville, UT

Re: @Charles..."You make a serious blunder in making your comment,and that is you think Utahns care what other Senators in Congress think about who we vote for. We Don't!"

The arrogance of your statement says it all!
The chicken little party lives in la la land and the voting sheep of Utah follow blindly on! Oh did I forget to mention "The Sky Is Falling"

Centerville, UT

Bennett promised when he first ran he would only stay one term. He lied.

His next greatist mistake is he actually said he knew more about what was best for his constituants than they did.

Bennett is an elitist progressive.

Next to go is Hatch that said he is to important not to be re-elected, an elitist progressive.

The movement is trying to eliminate elitists from government.

Kamas, UT

One fact remains: His time was up and he was the last to admit it.

Brer Rabbit
Spanish Fork, UT

Utah isn't like Massachusetts that keeps a Senator for life (Kennedy). We are totally able to do our own term limits. Senator Bennett had two personas, one for East of the Mississippi and one when he was West of the Mississippi especially when in Utah

I became a state delegate because of the unwillingness of Bennett's staff in Provo to listen to my concerns. Because I differed from their position on "Comprehensive Immigration Reform," they refused to even listen to me.

I don't care how much "pork" Bennett was able to bring to Utah, his "behind the scenes" methods were an affront to me, and many Utahns.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

In a way it's sad we are ruled by a party-based political system.

I think it was a shame that Bennett was eliminated before he even got to a point where we could ALL vote on it (he was defeated at the Republican Convention).

If the best 2-3 candidates were allowed to be on the final ballot (instead of requiring just ONE from the Republican Party and ONE from the Democrat Party, etc)... I think we could have seen a different result.

But opening up our electoral system like this COULD have the one result the Party People could NEVER tolerate. A ballot with TWO Democrats with ideas the people liked on the final ballot (and no Republican). Or TWO Republicans with good ideas (but possibly no Democrat making the final ballot).

I think if Bennett and Lee had been the two choices Utahns had in the general election... Bennett would have won. He's a moderate and appeals even to some Democrats (Lee doesn't). So in a way... Bennett was done in by the political convention system... and the elites in his party... not the people/voters of the state.

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