Party politics are preventing the implementation of crucial domestic policies, Institute of Politics director and former Seattle Mayor Charles T. Royer said during a discussion at the Kennedy School of Government last night.
Speaking with 20 students, Royer said American politics have become "shortsighted, with no long term planning and no cooperative spirit."
"The American people have pretty much had it with Republicans and Democrats," he said, adding that Ross Perot's garnering of 19 percent of the vote in the 1992 Presidential election is evidence of this trend.
Royer said people want change instead of partisan bickering. "People are fed up with the status quo," he said. "Change is seen as a political positive."
Royer said President Clinton's $16 billion stimulus plan, which was killed on the Senate floor, probably would have stimulated the economy by helping cities cope with the problems of housing, transportation and health care.
The plan--which the former may-or said would have addressed urban problems on a regional basis--was "what the mayors had been waiting for for 12 years," Royer said. With the defeat of the plan, "mayors have pretty much given up on spending, even on high priority issues," he said.
Royer blamed politics on the failure of the plan. "There are no votes in talking about urban policy," he said.