Nineteen ninety - four on a political level was an exciting time for me. I was fed up with the Democratic Party because of their leftward tilt and corruption. In my mind the time was long past due for a change. The Democrats had for the most part controlled Congress since the 1950's. Republican's Fred Thompson and Bill Frist were running for the Senate and Steve Gill was running against incumbent Bart Gordon here in the 4th District of Tennessee. For the first time in my life I actively supported political candidates for office and I was guardedly calling myself a Republican. I attended meetings, campaign rally's, placed yard signs, handed out bumper stickers, campaign buttons and spent many hours passing out campaign literature for all three Republican candidates, talking to strangers and shaking many hands.. Two out of three of my candidates won on election night. Steve Gill came very close to winning and I was very disappointed that he lost but nationwide the Republicans won a landslide in both houses of historical proportions. I was ecstatic and for the first time I felt that I played a small but very important role in that victory. I felt I was part of a larger grass roots effort. There were similarities and differences between then and now. The similarities are that the American people were angry over the leftward tilt of the Clinton administration. He had reneged on a middle class tax cut and people were angry over the attempt to pass Hillarycare, among other things, which would have been as much of a fiasco as Obamacare has been. The difference is that unlike now the Republicans had some leadership and were united in purpose. Newt Gingrich and others had presented the American voter with a clear choice called the "Contract With America". It was a list of reforms which was focused on low taxes, spending cuts, term limits, and a line item veto just to name a few.
Today the Republicans have no leadership and are squandering a golden opportunity to win an even bigger landslide in 2014. I have absolutely no desire to be a part of a losing effort to support a Party that has a long history of betrayal and cowardice. According to polls I have seen the Democrats are way behind in every area. People are furious over Obamacare. In 1994 the Republicans wisely united with the conservatives, especially the religious right. There was no Tea Party then. Today the establishment Republicans are, to their detriment, avoiding the Tea Party like the plague. The Republicans won the Independent vote in the 2012 presidential race but lost their base. That is why Obama won a second term. Conservatives like me are the base of the Republican Party. I am not a Republican but I, like many other people, vote Republican only because our options are limited. I will stay home rather than vote again for a Democrat in sheep's clothing like Lamar Alexander. Unless the establishment Republicans unite with their base, which is the Tea Party and religious right they will not have a dogs chance in hell of winning in 2014. The Republican's need to learn a valuable lesson from the Democrats. Nobody is better than they are at getting their base out to vote on election day. We have the advantage over them because there are more conservatives than liberals in this country, It doesn't matter though because they have leadership and we don't. Quite frankly the Republicans have done nothing to earn my vote or the millions of us who are simply looking for strong leadership and courage.
NO CITIZEN SHOULD EVER FORFEIT VOTE
As regards a statement made by Mr. Greg Segroves published on March 20, "I will stay home rather than vote again for a Democrat in sheep's clothing like Lamar Alexander". Mr. Segroves makes some important points, but I would submit this: When we find ourselves in the position of not having a candidate, party or cause we deem worth voting for, we must then weigh the candidates, part (ies) or causes we deem worth voting against. But we must never forfeit our vote just because we don't think anyone has earned it. It is disappointing to think that anyone would consider being a "bystander" in the election process when they could otherwise cast a vote that counts.
The following is my response.
To The Editor:
Ms.Carla Crader said that a person should never be a "bystander" in an election. Not knowing Ms. Crader I will give her the benefit of the doubt and take her advice as constructive criticism. However I never said that I wasn't going to vote. Congressman DesJarlais and Joe Carr are worthy of my vote as I see it now. In good conscience I could never vote for a Democrat. However I sincerely ask this question because I do not have a perfect answer. How does a voter punish treachery as displayed by both Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker? Do we just continue voting bad people into office as Ms Crader suggests? For what? To stand by and watch them cave on virtually every issue. These candidates thrive on people like Ms. Crader, with all due respect. I have heard Ms. Crader's argument used against me more times than I care to mention. It usually ends with, if you don't vote you have no right to complain. Wrong!! I served my country for 20 years and I pay more taxes than a good portion of the American people. I will continue to complain with the best of them as long as there is breath in me. However, I really don't know the real answer to my question. Maybe if the Republicans lose enough elections because of their corruption and stupidity they might wake up at some point. Term limits are an answer but these people will never on their own do anything to limit their ability to rip us off. As far as 2016 I can truthfully say that I will not vote for another establishment Republican like Bob Dole, George W. Bush, John McCain, Mitt Romney, Chris Christie or Jeb Bush. I guess I will throw away my vote and vote for the Libertarian Party candidate. In the meantime I will continue writing editorials, calling my representatives, and voting when it is possible. A lot of people died to earn my right to vote. So that makes it a valuable commodity. I am serving notice. If you politicians want my vote you will have to earn it.