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Letters to the Editor

Letter: What has happened to Republicans?

  • Author: Sean O'Hare
    | Opinion
  • Updated: October 10, 2019
  • Published October 10, 2019

Lies, misogyny, ludicrous tweets, chaos in government, trade war, support of dictators, all part of the legacy of the presidency of Donald Trump. Do Republicans really support this? With the exceptions of Jeff Flake and Mitt Romney, it appears that they do. How is this possible?

I grew up in a Democratic family in New York. It was sometimes difficult to support a Democrat when the Republican was the more progressive of the two. I remember Gov. Nelson Rockefeller, Sen. Jacob Javitz, and Mayor John Lindsey. Conservative Republicans, such as William F. Buckley and Milton Friedman, made intelligent and civil arguments. There was no ranting and raving, nonsense and lies, such as that to which we are now subjected. There was no absurdity coming from Republicans about fake news, murderers and rapists assaulting our borders, or insults to minority women and the handicapped, such as we get from Donald Trump. Where have those Republicans gone?

What would Abraham Lincoln, Herbert Hoover, William Taft or Teddy Roosevelt think of Trump? Would they stand up to him? Are Republicans really against affordable health care for all Americans? Are Republicans really in favor of tariffs and trade wars and market instability? Do Republicans really want to alienate and repel our allies while befriending dictators in Saudi Arabia and North Korea? Do religious Republicans really not care about Stormy Daniels and Trump’s other sexual adventures?

In the Republican debates leading up to Trump’s nomination, only one Republican candidate said that he would not vote for whichever Republican won — Trump. So why must Republicans who abhor Trump’s behavior and rhetoric have to support him? British conservatives quickly put Boris Johnson in his place. Why can’t American conservatives do the same to Trump?

One might think that Republicans would be in favor of increased and free international trade competition, incentives for creativity, fiscal balance, fighting deficits, and a stable immigration and refugee policy, all the opposites of Trump’s endeavors so far. Liberalism and conservatism are two sides of the same democratic coin. It appears Republicans have thrown that coin away.

— Sean O’Hare


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