Government Shutdown: Understanding The Mindset Of Legislators

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – We caught up with Representative Mike Ball (R-Madison) while he was filling some of his duties as a state legislator.

His duties on this day include touring Alabama’s Constitution Village, as part of the commission to plan the state’s bicentennial.

He’s having an easier day as a lawmaker than many.

But he knows what it’s like to draw a line in the sand in the middle of a statehouse.

He knows that on the biggest stage – sometimes you have to fight dirty, because that’s what sets our politics apart.

He says, “Even though the process looks messy, it’s very important that it is played out in the proper manner.  You know, dictatorships aren’t messy at all.”

Ball says there’s lots of legislation that everyone agrees on, but when it’s time to stand up for yourself, “You always have to figure out which is a political hill worth dying on.”

When it comes right down to it, this is the hill all members of Congress die on.  It’s just a matter of picking your battle.

The Affordable Care Act proved a popular cause for both sides.

Ball adds, “You know, if you’re in the process and there’s not something that you believe in strong enough that you’d give it all up, you probably don’t have any values.”

So here we are, these insurance exchanges in the line of fire, because Ball says at the end of the day, “I do think that there’s a lot of folks in Congress that feel like this is a hill worth dying on.”

That’s why we’re pushed to the limit, because this is the fight both sides want.

Now, it’s up to you, the voter, to decide who will survive the metaphor.

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