Read my colleague Robert Nedelkoff’s thoughtful views on the election and its possible aftermath. I would like to offer a respectful counter-point with some views of my own.
You know, I want to vote Republican. After all, I have been a registered Republican since my first presidential election in 1980. I’ve always considered myself a Nixon Republican.
However, while I would like to consider myself a Republican, I have difficulty recognizing what this party has become. I would bet that other Republicans in different eras, like Dwight Eisenhower, Nelson Rockefeller and even Barry Goldwater would have trouble identifying themselves as these Republicans.
The party of Reagan and Goldwater ran under the notion that government should get off our backs. However to these modern Republicans, it seems that this motto applies only to business situations, in the form of de-regulation. The modern Republicans of Bush and Romney feel that it is the government’s place to become involved in the individual’s private life — by making the choice for them on social issues like ones of life and death, and who they can or cannot marry. (After all, remember that Barry Goldwater was pro-choice, and fought the Moral Majority and their opposition to Sandra Day O’Connor in 1981.)
While Mr. Nedelhoff’s vision under the presidency of Senator Obama is interesting, progressives such as myself have other kinds of visions. Ones that keep us progressive up tonight too…
It is funny when the Republicans harp on the word ‘redistribution’. Isn’t that what has happened over the last eight years? Salaries of the upper class rise dramatically, while wages for the middle class go down. The best redistribution has been in the energy industry. Seven hundred billion overseas for oil, and the biggest profits for oil companies in history. 15.85 billion dollars in one quarter alone!! At least that’s one industry that isn’t suffering through the worse economic crises since the Great Depression.
Mr. Nedelkoff also asserts that Democrats equal raise in taxes. This has been a Republican talking point for years. Of course, while the finger is being pointed to the left, the right ignores the recent tax increases by Bush 41. After all, who was the last Republican who balanced the federal budget? Bill Clinton. Silly me, he was a Democrat.
Senator Obama’s tax proposals do not raise taxes for the vast majority of Americans — unless the majority of Americans gross over $250,000 per year. I wish it were true… I would go on a tour of Presidential Libraries myself. But alas, it is not. The proposals simply roll back the Bush Tax Cuts.
In sharp contrast however, John McCain will raise everyone’s taxes. Under his plan, your health care benefits that you receive from your employer will be taxable income. So that is considered income, and will be taxed.
One of the most important considerations in this election, like all presidential elections, is the future of the Supreme Court. This is the most long lasting legacy a president can leave. In a McCain presidency, I fear several neo-con appointments to the Supreme Court. Justices that will limit access to the courts, and limit our most important freedoms, including the right of individual choice and the right to privacy. At that point, I would not only be concerned with Roe, I would be concerned about Griswold as well.
So, in closing, one can probably tell that I’m not voting for the Republican ticket. It all comes down to a basic thought. I simply cannot believe that the Republicans are entitled to another four years. Much like allowing someone to borrow your car. If it comes back wrecked, do you let the little brother drive it?? Especially when that little brother has voted with big brother over 90% of the time…