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Cleaning Up Politics

Weekly commentary by Face the Nation host Bob Schieffer.

Well, we are almost there. On Wednesday morning we can all take the obligatory shower and wash off as much of this election as we can.

Remember back when the day after the election was a time we celebrated our favorite candidate's victory or were sad because our favorite lost?

Now we just want to be sure we didn't get any of it on us.

And no wonder. If all we knew about the elections is what we learned from the TV ads, we would think the only people running for public office were crooks, deviates and fools.

True, we did have a handful of crooks and two or three deviates in the news. But they are exceptions. Call me a hopeless romantic, but I still believe most people who run for office are good people. But don't expect to hear that from the guy with the raspy voice who seems to narrate all the TV ads.

A long time ago someone said democracies get the governments they deserve. But don't we deserve an election process better than this?

How have we come from a time when every grandmother thought her grandchild would grow up to be president to an era where you can't find a soul who wants his or her child to go near politics, let alone run for office?

May I ask the obvious question: Does that have anything to do with the kind of campaigns we are now made to suffer?

We'll never get the government we deserve until we make the hard choices needed to reform the way we pick our leaders.

I am Bob Schieffer and I hate these campaign commercials - all of them.

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By Bob Schieffer

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