The Norman Transcript

Opinion

November 17, 2013

It’s time for a standard

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

Congratulations to Mr. Walter Kelley for his article about politicians paying up.  Great idea. I suggest we take it a bit further. All individuals elected by public vote should be held to a documented performance standard. The standard should be based on what they stated they would accomplish if elected and what they say once elected.

First, during elections and there after, they should be held to a standard of truth. For example, if they make a statement that Oklahomans (or their electing body) do or don’t want or like something, thus indicating they represent ALL citizens of the electing body, this is not true unless they received 100 percent of the votes.

They should state “the majority of citizens” do or don’t like or want something. They should not be allowed to make misleading statements without penalty.

Here is another example. If they state during campaigning that they will accomplish something, then that “something” becomes part of their performance standard if elected.

We need a strong performance standard for elected officials that have penalties for not meeting the performance standard, up to and including removal from office for not telling the whole truth, since telling the whole truth is something we try to teach our children. Maybe teachers would have an easier job educating our children if there were more honest, forthright public examples to reference.

 Here is an idea. Let’s have State Superintendent Janet Barresi develop performance standards for all publicly elected officials in Oklahoma — with penalties for not performing.

RICHARD C. HALL

Norman

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