All indications point to the Democrats regaining control of at least one House of Congress in the upcoming mid-term election. But as they like to say, it ain’t over ’til the fat lady sings. Indeed, if recent past elections are any indication, Democrats are going to have to fight tooth andd nail for every seat they manage to pick up. After all, in the 2000 election, Gore (the Democrat) had the most number of popular votes and should have had the electoral votes as well, until shenanigans in Florida, a state governed by the president’s brother no less, caused their electoral votes to be given to Bush. Again in 2004, when polls showed a Kerry victory (another Democrat) as the likely outcome, shenanigans in Ohio gave republicans and Bush the push over the top. Time and again in recent history, elections that should have favored Democrats produced opposite results in favor of the ruling aprty, in no small part because of irregularities and probable manipulation of the voting process by Republican party members. So while Democrats are expected to edge out the Republicans this election, it is by no means a certainty in my mind.

But suppose the Democrats do win enough seats to become the majority party again? Will they finally tackle some of the core problems that have led to one of the most corrupt governments in our nation’s history? Will they have the sense of duty and stewardship and character to attack and end some of the most perverse aspects of ‘business as usual’ politics? Will they muster the courage to enact real ethics reform, reestablish real oversight, and reclaim their own political independence from the executive branch of government?

I can only hope that they will. K Street, on the other hand, and its plethora of lobbyists are hoping not. Long an established money changing operation between corporations and the Republican party machine, clients of K Street Lobbyist Firms are increasingly showing up at fundraisers for Democrats and are increasing their financial contributions to those running on the Democratic ticket. And while this does strengthen the idea that Democrats are in a viable position to win in November, it also shows how quickly the sharks move from one food source to another. Big Business loves the Republican party, especially in it’s current incarnation, but they also know to hedge their bets, and are gearing up to grease the hands of the other side. The question is whether or not the Democrats really want to change the way Congress is malfunctioning or whether they just want to hold the reins of power for a while.

In spite of the fact that I despise the current Republican agenda, it’s associated hypocritical politicians and their scandals, and the ruinous effects their party ‘s administration has had on American prestige, when I vote for a Democrat this November, I expect them to buck the status quo with an enlarged sense of duty, courage, and stewardship. I expect them to change the disasterous course we’ve been set upon, to enact real ethics reform, to reestablish real accountability, and to reclaim their independence from the executive branch.

I expect a changed plan of action in Iraq through new legislation revising the AUMF orders that began the Iraqi debacle.

I expect a national clean elections act similar to those in Arizona and Maine, to permanently reduce the influence of K Street and it’s spawns.

I expect enactment of the Read The Bills Act, The One Bill At A Time Act, and The Write The Laws Act which will mandate that elected officials actually read what they vote on, write the laws up for a vote (as opposed to an aide or a corporate employee), and limit all laws to single topics, making it impossible for unrelated legislation to be inserted at the last minute.

I expect a plan to address a universal health care system, a plan to decrease the trade and federal deficits, and a plan to restore the American job market through increased educational opportunities or reformations.

I expect a mature approach to international problems instead of posturing, pouting, and pre-emptive warring.

I expect a Congress that will perform rigorous oversight on public policy and international relations while investigating the failures borne out of a decade of looking the other way. I expect them to hold responsible any and all parties who have broken laws or behaved in an unethical manner without creating a circus atmosphere.

And finally, I expect a Congress that is not steeped in partisanship or religious pandering or machismo. I expect rationality, critical thinking, and progressive problem solving.

Maybe I expect too much, but I don’t expect anything we don’t deserve from our government. And I won’t be giving a Democratically controlled Congress any slack if they fail to live up to my expectations. I’ll be voting to change the direction. I damn well expect the rudder to move.