New administration prompts worry as well as wonder

Daniel Sotelo

With the inauguration looming, I find my thoughts jumping back and forth from one critical issue to the next. How will the new administration really handle the ongoing bailouts for financial institutions and the auto industry without the impediment of another president? Can a Democrat-controlled Congress and president truly reach across the aisle to cement unity and shared goals? I, like everyone else, do not have the answers to these questions. What I do have is near-boundless hope that the Obama administration will restore the Federal government’s responsibility of maintaining top-down accountability and transparency.

The last eight years have shrouded the actions of the federal government with a steel curtain of secrecy. Some actions, such as the warrantless domestic surveillance program, have been direct transgressions perpetrated against American citizens. Other scandals, like the partisan firing of U.S attorneys by Alberto Gonzalez and others in the Justice Department, have been assaults on the American ideals of justice and freedom. What we look for now is change of direction to restore the integrity of our country throughout the world.

To sum up my optimism, what I most look forward to is looking forward. While there may eventually be legal action taken toward any past constitutional violations, the focus of the American people must be steadfastly on the future. With his Lincoln-esque team of rivals, President-elect Obama must revamp the presidency and cabinet to alter the American image, both at home and abroad. Internationally, the new administration must seek to balance national security and humanitarian responsibility, all the while preserving state sovereignty, which are not mutually exclusive ideas, as is sometimes propagated. Domestically, there must be nothing less than a complete devotion to uphold the laws of the Constitution. With years of patience and sacrifice ahead, all of America must seek out the greatest resource: unity.

-ÿDaniel Sotelo is a political science junior.