quotations about politics

Politics quote

Political aspirants make too much of the people before election, and, if successful, too much of themselves after it. They use the people when they want to rise, as we treat a spirited horse when we want to mount him;--for a time we pat the animal upon the neck, and speak him softly; but once in the saddle, then come the whip and spur.

CHRISTIAN NESTELL BOVEE, Intuitions and Summaries of Thought


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Politics determine who has the power, not who has the truth.

PAUL KRUGMAN, The Australian Financial Review, September 6, 2010


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I always believe that ultimately, if people are paying attention, then we get good government and good leadership. And when we get lazy, as a democracy and civically start taking shortcuts, then it results in bad government and politics.

BARACK OBAMA, interview, MSNBC, September 25, 2006


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All of us are neck deep in politics everyday of our lives. Every organization on earth that involves human beings has its politics. Politics does not have to be a bad thing. Actually politics can be a good thing when we bring people to the table to sit down, work together, compromise and get things done for the common good.

BILL GINDLESPERGER, "Politics is about how many friends, not enemies, you can make", Public Opinion, May 6, 2016


Instead of giving a politician the keys to the city, it might be better to change the locks.

DOUG LARSON, attributed, Phillips' Treasury of Humorous Quotations


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However [political parties] may now and then answer popular ends, they are likely in the course of time and things, to become potent engines, by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people and to usurp for themselves the reins of government, destroying afterwards the very engines which have lifted them to unjust dominion.

GEORGE WASHINGTON, Farewell Address, September 19, 1796


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If you have sense enough to realize why flies gather around a restaurant, you should be able to appreciate why men run for office.

EDGAR WATSON HOWE, Country Town Sayings


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The majority is never right. Never, I tell you! That's one of these lies in society that no free and intelligent man can help rebelling against. Who are the people that make up the biggest proportion of the population -- the intelligent ones or the fools?

HENRIK IBSEN, An Enemy of the People


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If a political party does not have its foundation in the determination to advance a cause that is right and that is moral, then it is not a political party; it is merely a conspiracy to seize power.

DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER, speech, March 6, 1956


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I used to say that politics was the second-oldest profession. I have come to know that it bears a gross similarity to the first.

RONALD REAGAN, speech at a business conference in Los Angeles, California, March 2, 1977


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Politics, n. A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles. The conduct of public affairs for private advantage.

AMBROSE BIERCE, The Devil's Dictionary


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In politics, it's what isn't said that matters.

K. J. PARKER, Devices and Desires


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In politics, sunny days and rainy days can change very quickly.

GIULIO ANDREOTTI, "Giulio Andreotti: le frasi celebri e gli aforismi", L'Huffington Post, June 5, 2013


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People really don't care if politicians attack each other with untrue stories. They figure if you don't want to get hurt, you shouldn't have filed for office. They figure whatever happens to us, our lives will be better than theirs.

BILL CLINTON, speech at Campus Progress National Student Conference, July 13, 2005


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You don't have to wait till your party's in power to have an impact on life at home and around the world.

BILL CLINTON, speech at Campus Progress National Student Conference, July 13, 2005


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Plots, true or false, are necessary things,
To raise up commonwealths and ruin kings.

JOHN DRYDEN, Absalom and Achitophel


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The only motive that can keep politics pure is the motive of doing good for one's country and its people.

HENRY FORD, "Party Politics", Ford Ideals


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I never desire to know anything of the detail of political measures, lest even those which I think best should lose anything of their intrinsic value to me, by seeing what low, paltry, personal motives and base machinery and dirty hands have helped to bring them about.

FANNY KEMBLE, Further Records, February 14, 1874


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In the founding era of our country, it was not organized religion but personal faith that brought focus and unified the early leadership--maybe an unspoken faith in God, and certain values that came with that faith. So in that sense, we cannot discount, in my judgment, religious faith in politics.

BILLY GRAHAM, Newsweek, August 14, 2006


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We've come to be consumed by a 24-hour, slash-and-burn, negative ad, bickering, small-minded politics that doesn't move us forward. Sometimes one side is up and the other side is down. But there's no sense that they are coming together in a common-sense, practical, nonideological way to solve the problems that we face.

BARACK OBAMA, New York Times, December 11, 2006


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