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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    Why I Registered Republican

    I finally did it ‘- some months ago, I stopped at a NYPIRG booth outside the Union, filled out a voting application, and checked the ‘Republican’ box. I did so with grim satisfaction, knowing that this move would bring the country, albeit in a microscopic way, closer towards normalcy.

    Republicans, I have decided, are not all united under the Neocon banner. Men like John McCain are reasonable, liberal when they need to be, and truly conservative in the places that matter. I don’t even mind a slight religious overtone to the party, if it was handled in the appropriate fashion. While I am not a Christian, I fully support and try to live by the basic tenets of that religion, which also happens to coincide with good moral principles. Live and let live; do unto others as you would have others do unto you; love thy neighbor; give generously; do not cast the first stone ‘- these are all values that I support, and that I can’t imagine any American not supporting. These are the secular and moral parts of the religious message and that has my complete support. Of course, part of this message, specifically the ‘live and let live’ part, should protect our rights. That means the rights for gays to marry, the right for me, as a non-Christian tax payer, to not have my tax money support religious institutions, and the right to a free press ‘- I know, these aren’t all traditional Republican values, but they are consistent with the larger message.

    I see a civil war in the Republican party. I see those who fabricate intelligence to go to war, who violate FISA to spy on Americans, who violate the Constitution by detaining people indefinitely without due process, and who call dissenters ‘un-American’ for having a voice. I look at the White House and Congress today and I see corruption, which puts are nation at a great risk. To get revenge on a CIA agent, top administration officials, including Karl Rove, Vice President Dick Cheney, and his Chief of Staff, ‘Scooter’ Libby, and quite possibly the president himself, leaked the name of a CIA operative, who previously worked undercover for the government. If the Republican Congress had the initiative to call impeachment hearings against Clinton for lying, I look to the same Congress to hold the Bush administration accountable for its crimes.

    I registered Republican because there needs to be a change and that change can only happen from within the party. The Democrats have no consistent message and certainly no teeth to force Bush to accept the rule of law. I am a Republican, and therefore, part of the Republican constituency ‘- I get to vote in the GOP primaries and disapprove of the President as a Republican. The Democrats have behaved like deer caught in the headlights for far too long. There are but a few real stars of the party, and they will never gain national momentum ‘- they are products of their regions, like Hillary Clinton, Chuck Schumer, Ted Kennedy, and Nancy Pelosi. The only hope for an honest government, one that believes in core moral values and a truly smaller government, must come from the dissent that is allowed within the party of power. I look forward to a Republican party free of Neocon leadership, run instead by pragmatists who have convictions that I can be proud of.

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