I don’t arrive at my polling place without having made a decision about every candidate and every issue, and how I intend to cast my ballot. I have been able to vote for nearly 48 years, and with the exception of two general election years, I am proud to say that I have been 100 percent Independent. I have listened to the candidates; read their position on each issue; and made my mark next to the name of the man or woman I believed to be most qualified for the position. And, thanks to a rare choice here in Nevada, I have all too often been forced to choose ‘none of the above.’ The 2016 general election is drawing near, and with a single exception, I don’t believe that I’ll be able to vote for any Republican candidates.
It appears that the GOP, which includes both Republicans and the TEA Party, wants to take our nation backwards in time. It is attempting to take away voting rights for minorities, and continually attempts to roll back or repeal advances in social programs which began after WWII. The GOP wants women to return to a subservient role as second class citizens, and put gay men and women back ‘in the closet.’
With the exception of Rand Paul and Jeb Bush, I have not heard a single new or even a positive idea from another GOP hopeful. I can’t vote for Rand Paul; his Libertarian ideas are far too dangerous, and could result in an acceleration of income disparity. Jeb Bush is a ‘maybe.’ He must prove to me that he is completely separated from the policies of his father and brother.
In the last couple of days GOP presidential candidates have made statements which not only guarantee that they will not receive my vote, but actually frighten me.
Wednesday Ben Carson, a former neurosurgeon, who I assume has a medical degree, claimed that being gay is a choice, and therefore the rights of the LGBT community are different from the rights of minorities. He said that the proof was delivered by prison inmates, most of whom enter confinement as straight, but when they are released many of them are gay. He said ‘something must have happened while they were incarcerated.’
I assumed that a man of science would have read the facts. Carson is correct that not all studies have resulted in the same conclusion, but the one that counts has; the American Psychiatric Association decided that homosexuals are born; they don’t decide to change their sexual preference.
How could I vote for a man who doesn’t believe that ‘all men are created equal?’
Then there’s Marco Rubio. He loves the past. Although the United States’ embargo of his parent’s native land, Cuba, has had no effect in over 50 years, he believes it should remain. But that’s not the worst of it; he would institute George W. Bush’s economic policies if he was the president. Let’s see; I know it’s a long time ago, but how did that work out?
Bush inherited a surplus from Bill Clinton. In 2008, after two terms of ‘trickle-down’ economics, our nation was in the worst recession in its history. Senator Rubio; thanks, but no thanks.
I saved my favorite for last; I call him ‘Mr. if it works, let’s break it;’ Ted Cruz.
The junior Senator from Texas is loyal to one and only one entity; the TEA Party. He doesn’t care about the future of the GOP or the people of the United States; he cares about the obstructionist party and what it can do for him.
Cruz’ efforts have been twofold; to halt any efforts for immigration reform, and to repeal the Affordable Care Act. However, he claims to be concerned about approximately 7.5 million people who might lose their health care if the Supreme Court strikes down a portion of the Affordable Care Act. He offered a solution; to allow the purchase of health insurance across state lines.
First of all, he doesn’t care; Cruz has voted against every measure which would help low income earners and the poor. Second of all, economists and health care experts disagree about the merits of ‘cross-state’ purchase of health insurance.
How can I possibly vote Republican? Scott Walker hates the working class; Rick Perry is, well, he’s Rick Perry, and Mike Huckabee wants to institute Christianity as the nation’s religion, violating the Constitution.
I do like ‘none of the above;’ more each and every day.
By James Turnage