The first presidential debate was a painful reminder that our national candidates are far from perfect spokesmen for their parties. President Trump excelled at interrupting his opponent and irritating the moderator. His estimable accomplishments were overshadowed. But I still intend to vote Trump-Pence.
Similarly, on the state level, I’m eager to vote for Loren Culp for governor, even though some detractors in the Columbian’s Letters to the Editor have argued that he could never be the best choice because he hails from a mountain town of only 1,100 residents.
I urge a Republican vote on principle.
The real choice now is not about the individuals running. It’s about the big ideas that separate the two major parties. This election presents a choice between fundamental approaches to government that would take our country in starkly different directions. Voters must choose, despite flaws in their candidates.
On the Republican side, the big ideas have always seemed to me fundamentally optimistic, morally sound, and proven to promote economic expansion. The primary drivers of progress, profit, and other values are the freedom of the individual and of the private sector. Put more simply, the choice is a greater reliance upon individual and economic freedom as opposed to a shift toward government control of and involvement in our economy. Free markets versus socialism.
Another big idea to be defended is that life — including that of tiny infants before and after birth — is protected under the Constitution. A strong border and consistent immigration policy are not only essential but humane; our rights to bear arms are unique and precious; and U.S. foreign policy, though recognizing the necessity of alliances, must primarily benefit our nation.