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Monday, May 9, 2016

Voting for the left?

An open letter to Republican and “no party” voters

Dear Fellow Americans:

I know many of you are angry and feeling frustrated. So many of you are grieving the loss of the America you grew up in, and the erosion of the fundamental values that provided us all with a sense of security, identity and purpose as proud Americans. No, we didn’t always agree, but at least we felt like we could make a difference.

Now, we no longer feel in control of our own lives. Government has seemingly crept into every nook and cranny. We can’t choose our doctor anymore, or the curriculum being taught in our schools, or even practice our religion in some instances, without being bullied into silence. Goodness, we can’t even recite the Pledge of Allegiance “under God” without being sued. We’re paying more and more taxes each year, but household incomes are lower than they were 20 years ago, and 94 million Americans are not even working right now – the highest ever in our country’s history.

And to add insult to injury, the number of those filing for unemployment benefits is at its highest in more than a year, and the number of layoffs planned this year is surging. Meanwhile, you may have a son or daughter who just graduated college and is looking for a job, and you’re worried about how they will possibly repay their student loans in this economy, or if they will live more comfortably in their lifetime than you have in yours.

I know you have loyally voted Republican down the line, thinking it would make a difference. And when you did this in 2010, you actually voted in the biggest majority in the House in over 70 years. And at home, you made sure our state legislatures were Republican, too. In 2010, we gained more seats in state legislatures across the country than at any other time in modern history, and six states even turned out their Democrat governors and replaced them with Republican ones, instead.

I remember that you did the same in 2014, voting right down the line for Republicans. The U.S. Senate gained nine additional seats, as a result. That made it the largest Senate gain by any party since 1980, and the largest Senate gain in a midterm election since 1958.

Even with all that I know you wonder aloud now, “Has anything really changed?” The leadership we have in Congress seems less like leaders, and more like sellouts. That is probably why many of you are registering as “no party” and why there are twice as many voters registering in Louisiana as “no party” voters than are registering as Democrat and Republican – combined.

And many of you say you cannot vote for Trump, if he is the nominee. Some are considering voting for a Libertarian Party candidate, or not voting at all. Some have even said that they will vote for Hillary.

If you are considering doing any of this, I beg you to reconsider. I’ve already mentioned why so many Americans feel angry and frustrated. It’s been the growth of government reaching into every facet of our lives and the seemingly inept, or feckless leadership, often from career-politicians who have been Republicans in name only.

But look what happened in 2012, when 3-4 million Republican voters stayed home – we got bigger government, more political correctness, set-up sanctuary cities, saw higher unemployment, paid higher taxes, processed a record number of applications from Americans needing food stamps, and now we have a country more divided along race, gender and wealth than ever before.

If these are the “anger” issues that created an environment where the Trump campaign could grow to the point of him being the Republican nominee, then what do you think your support of Hillary (or electing her outright) will do to change this environment in the 2020 election, after a couple of Supreme Court appointments, possible amnesty for all those here illegally, and an electorate even more dependent on ever-expanding federal government, under a Clinton administration?

How would a principled, genuine conservative, like Ted Cruz, even have a snowball’s chance in hell of being elected if that happens?

If we conservatives allow our emotions to get the best of us, and we make it more likely for Hillary to be elected president because we stay home, or vote for a candidate that has no mathematical chance at this point to be elected, then we will virtually ensure that 1) the anger, frustration and division in this country will continue to grow (under a Clinton administration), 2) the Democrats will likely remain in the White House until 2024, and 3) that a Trump-like (not Cruz-like) candidate will be the Republican Party’s nominee again in 2020 because all of the “anger” issues will likely be the same as they are today, but only worse.

So, now is the time for us think big picture. Trump may not be your choice, but he’s the only choice that makes sense. It’s a catch-22 situation, I know. But if you protest his candidacy, you will elect Hillary, and inadvertently preserve the very conditions that gave rise to his campaign in the first place. You make it less likely that principled conservatives, like Ted Cruz, will ever have a shot again, at least not anytime soon, to be elected to the highest office in our land.

And by then, unfortunately, it may just be too late.

Louis R. Avallone is a Shreveport businessman and attorney. He is also a former aide to U.S. Representative Jim McCrery and editor of The Caddo Republican. His columns have appeared regularly in The Forum since 2007. Follow him on Facebook, on Twitter @louisravallone or by e-mail at louisavallone@mac.com.


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