Carolyn Kaster, Associated Press
President Barack Obama pauses as he speaks during a news conference in the Rose Garden of the White House, Wednesday, April 17, 2013, in Washington, about measures to reduce gun violence.

Americans suffered a severe disappointment with the recent defeat of a weakened gun control bill. In spite of the overwhelming approval of the public, the legislation ended in the trash can. Five Democrats voted with the solid Republican minority. Many voters blame Congress for ignoring the wishes of their own constituents and in many cases they were right.

However, the real problem was money, which bought and sold many legislators. And who had the big bucks to stand up against our government? The National Rifle Association. When you think back on how difficult it is to get our Congress to pass legislation that benefits the common people, and how easy it is to grant special privileges to the wealthy and big business interests, it kind of makes you wonder who is running the country.

How can we keep the corporate money from ruining our representative democracy? All we have is one vote and a $10 donation. If only we had a nonpartisan organization which would look at a candidates' voting record, see how many times they voted against the public's wishes and then ask the public to donate to defeat or elect that candidate.

Bob Van Velkinburgh