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Your Voice: What is "the swamp?"

SOUTH Bend, Ind. — it’s a big talking point in the 2018 midterms but do voters in South Bend care about draining “the swamp” in D.C.?

Thousands of them chanted the slogan during President Donald Trump’s rally in Elkhart earlier this month, but its meaning is lost on casual news consumers.

“First thing I would think of is draining one of the over-flooded lakes or ponds around the area,” said voter Patrick Harmon. “I’m not really sure.”

Just like the murky waters of an actual swamp, even voters more in tune with politics in South Bend say the message behind this trending political platform still isn’t too clear.

“You can talk to other people and the swamp will be kind of a completely different thing depending on how you want to spin it,” said voter Toria Sullivan. “The Trump administration for example would take the swamp as being like very “establishment” parties; so the longtime congressional members.”

That appears to be the definition for Republican U.S. Senate nominee Mike Braun as well.

During the primary, he said he entered the race to get help rid of so-called career politicians in Washington.

He’s promising, if elected in November, to push for term limits in Congress as well.

“If someone’s in there for a longtime and they’re doing a decent job, that’s a good reason for why they’re in there for a longtime,” said Sullivan. “Whereas to me someone being in there that isn’t qualified and has no idea what they’re doing, that’s a bit swampy to me.”

Like Sullivan, other voters in town see the phrase a bit differently.

“The swamp is a convenient metaphor we use when talking to each to engage in the really complicated subject of corruption and the appearance thereof,” said voter Nathan Levin-Aspenson.

Whether voters think there’s a corruption or career problem in the Capitol, could their votes in the general election help drain the proverbial swamp?

“It’s not going to come from some politician running on a platform of ‘draining the swamp’ because the problem is actually deeper and more complicated than that and most of them know it,” said Levin-Aspenson.


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