Only Rep. Jim Matheson was able to compromise on his position to vote for the budget deal worked out by congressional leaders and President Barack Obama. The rest of our delegation, Rep. Rob Bishop and Rep. Jason Chaffetz and Sen. Orrin Hatch and Sen. Mike Lee, waited until they knew the deal would pass, for the sake of the nation, then, perhaps predictably, voted against the compromise measure and thus for their chances for re-election in Utah in 2012.

If you're happy with all their votes — fine. If not, then don't just complain. Do something about it. Go to your neighborhood caucus next March, perhaps both the Democratic and Republican ones, and nominate candidates you believe in, for state and national offices.

Don't wait for the November general election, or even the primary elections. Your choices by then will have been limited by someone else; the caucuses are key.

Tom Metcalf

Salt Lake City