LIBERTY HILL, Texas (KXAN) - First things first. It's pronounced, "Go," not "Goo."
"That's how we know if you're in the club, if you call it, 'Go'or 'Goo,'" said GOOOH founder Tim Cox, of Liberty Hill inWilliamson County. "And we all laugh; that's what happens when theylet a computer guy come up with a name for something likethis."
The letters stand for "Get Out of Our House" and theorganization stands for replacing every single member of the U.S.House of Representatives with Independents who promise ahead oftime to actually represent their constituents, something Cox saysis not happening now. He is pushing the group's message online andin a book he wrote, called, Revolution! A New Plan for SelectingRepresentatives.
"It's the money in politics," he said. "It's the parties tellingthe politicians how to vote. It's the fact that they're interestedin their own career before they think about you or I and the factthat there's no accountability. They'll say whatever they want tosay to get elected and then they'll get up there and do just theopposite." (See the full interview with Tim Coxhere)
Cox cites one Williamson County politician as a perfectexample.
"Somebody like John Carter, right, he's a judge here inWilliamson County; he's part of the good ol' boy network," he said."They place him in there. Now he's been up there for six or eightor ten years. He had the gall to say this summer at one of his townhalls that only God or his wife will term limit him. That'scomplete arrogance." (See the full interview with Tim Coxhere)
In fact, term limits are a central issue in the GOOOH approach,but by no means, the only one. Each member of the organization isasked to donate $100. With a goal of 500,000 members, that wouldraise $5 million to fund a nationwide campaign for 435 candidates,one for each Congressional district. The candidates would beselected by a novel process. It is start with a questionnaire eachmember must fill out. There are 100 questions, designed to measurethe person's political stripes.
For example, would you vote to legalize marijuana? Would yousupport a guest worker program for non-citizens? Would you vote fora national health care system? And would you vote to allowAmericans to wear concealed handguns? The list, however, oftenseems to over simplify complex issues. One, for example, asks,"Will you vote for or against a guest worker program that allowsnon-U.S. citizens to work in the United States?" To work where,though? To do what? By non-U.S. citizen, does the question mean aperson that's here now already or one that comes in the future? Doall the ones that are here now have to go home first? None of theseissues are addressed in the question.
"The questions are trying to get you to declare what yourposition is on an issue and then you'll debate those points withyour peers," Cox said. "It forces you to declare on which side of aline you stand. Are you for or against reducing foreign aid, by 'x'amount? Are you for or against a balanced budget amendment? Are youfor or against the 'fair tax?' Those are all very fair questions.If you're going to go to office and represent me, how would youvote if you were there?"
"I don't expect bills to come up that will match thosequestionnaires," he said. "But based on the way you answer those, Iget a really good feel for how you're going to vote on key issueswhen you're up there." (See the full interview with Tim Coxhere)
At election time, GOOOH members from each Congressional districtwould be randomly sorted into pools of ten. Each pool would picktwo of their number to send to the next round. Finally onecandidate would emerge to challenge the political party nominees ineach district.
The GOOOH candidates would have to agree to reject all campaigndonations from special interest groups, to vote in accordance withthe promises they made on the questionnaires, and to resign if theyviolate that promise without the permission of the members in theirdistricts.
"The people are saying, 'I'm fed up with both parties,'" saidCox. "It's not just Republicans; it's not just Democrats. Thisisn't just an Obama backlash, right, because we just had a Bushbacklash. It's a politician backlash. "We need representatives thatwill represent us, not ones that will represent the specialinterest money and not ones that will represent the politicalparties and not ones that are worried about their career. They needto be listening to the people and only the people. That's who theyrepresent." (See the full interview with Tim Coxhere)
Cox acknowledges that these are untested waters, and he worriessome about devoting his life to a cause that could ultimately causedamage. He worries, but not that much.
"The worst thing that can happen is that we put 435 yahoos likeyou and me up there," he said. "Can we do any worse than what thefolks up there are doing? Could we possible spend any more money?Could we possibly cause the postal service to lose more money ormore people to come into our country illegally? There's no way wecould make it any worse."
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