Republicans

Donald Trump’s Dangerous Proposed Ban on Muslims Entering America

Donald Trump

(Photo Credit: CNBC)

Donald Trump has proposed a ban on all Muslims entering America, and this couldn’t be a more dangerous threat to religious liberty in the land of the free and home of the brave. From its inception, America has been a nation of immigrants. All people living in this country are immigrants except Native Americans. Trump’s proposal would impose a religious litmus test on those seeking to become citizens and on those desiring to travel to our country. How can Republicans, passionate champions of religious freedom, continue to approve a man undermining this important freedom like no one ever in American history? Although Trump has provided the 2016 presidential campaign with entertainment, it’s time to end his reality television version of a presidential campaign.

We face serious threats from terrorists foreign and domestic. This isn’t the time for a comedy show; it’s time for authentic leadership. While Mr. Trump doesn’t have the support of a majority of Republicans, he’s receiving the highest percentage of support in this crowded field. Even in a crowded field, Trump’s reckless policies and positions should prevent him from being the Republican frontrunner. Will the Republican Party be comfortable with being labeled “the anti-religious liberty Party”? Well, that’s exactly the message it will send by keeping Trump as its frontrunner and making him the Republican presidential nominee.

In response to Mr. Trump’s radical Muslim policy, former Vice President Dick Cheney stated the following: “Well I think this whole notion of that somehow we need to say no more Muslims and just ban a whole religion goes against everything we stand for and believe in. I mean religious freedom’s been a very important part of our, our history.” I couldn’t agree more with Vice President Cheney. Cheney’s remarks underscore my argument about Trump’s assault on religious liberty, and they emphasize how Trump’s Muslim policy threaten the fundamental values and principles responsible for America being an exceptional nation.

How can you believe in the idea of American exceptionalism and bar all Muslims from entering America?

Our efforts to aggressively combat terrorism shouldn’t ever come at the cost of erasing core American liberties, values and principles. I love America and believe we should employ all responsible measures to protect the homeland. Imposing a ban on all Muslims wishing to enter America will only embolden extant terrorists and buttress the campaign to recruit new terrorists. Trump’s policy gives radical Islamic terrorists the false evidence of America’s hatred of Islam they need to proliferate their malevolent propaganda through various mediums.

What a sophomoric and discriminatory homeland and national security strategy: ban all Muslims from America to keep the nation safe. Seriously? True evidence that Trump is a joke of a presidential candidate. The joke, unfortunately, is being maliciously played on our country.

Republican voters have the power to end this cruel joke today.

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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Republicans Should Overwhelmingly and Quickly Reject Donald Trump

Donald Trump

(Photo Credit: Vice)

If Republicans are serious about taking the White House back in 2016, they must make it clear quickly by demonstrating an overwhelming rejection of Donald Trump. Although Dr. Ben Carson is now the leading Republican presidential candidate, and Senator Marco Rubio is the leading Republican presidential establishment candidate, 42% of Republican voters believe that Donald Trump will inevitably be the Republican presidential nominee. The reality is Donald Trump will lose in a landslide to Hillary Clinton. Trump will perform horribly with Hispanics, women and independent voters. While “Make America Great Again” is a great campaign slogan, it’s not enough to win the presidency in 2016. Mr. Trump is a talented entertainer and businessman but we’ve suffered from enough cruel comedy during President Obama’s tenure in office. Republicans need to coalesce really soon around a candidate who can win. Trump is simply not the right answer.

For the most part, Mr. Trump offers only anger and name-calling. Anger and name-calling are not policies. Yes, Americans should be angry about the state our nation right now. It doesn’t take being loud and offensive to evince that anger. How about presenting a detailed comprehensive plan that reveals how you will bring substantive reform to America? The American people understand we’re facing serious challenges and problems, including increasing national security threats, a struggling economy, a broken immigration system, and ridiculous healthcare costs. The challenges and problems we’re experiencing demand competent and proven leadership. While competent and proven leadership does not have to come from someone with political experience, of course, Republicans need to support a candidate who is providing detailed solutions to the challenges and problems America confronts. In President Obama, we’ve had an opportunity to see the harsh consequences of electing someone not ready to lead. Republican presidential candidates who aren’t focused on detailed solutions to America’s challenges and problems aren’t ready to lead.

Being an effective President of the United States isn’t about who has the best personality or who has the best one-liners. If we’re honest with ourselves, we’ll admit that the person who is best for the job may just be boring and soft-spoken but has an undying commitment to policy matters. Do you really see Donald Trump as a person with a real commitment to policy matters? To this point, he’s not given us any reason to believe he’s devoted to policy. He’s too focused on polls, attacking other Republican presidential candidates, and making the most outrageous statements possible to garner media attention. With this being the case, how can Republicans persuade the American people they’re serious about the White House if they elect Mr. Trump as their presidential nominee?

It’s time for Republican voters and the Republican Party to eliminate the unnecessary division between establishment and anti-establishment; this is complete foolishness. While the division within the Party’s ranks constantly increases, a Democrat continues to occupy the White House. The time has come to narrow down the list of Republican presidential candidates to Dr. Ben Carson, Senator Marco Rubio, Governor Jeb Bush, Governor Chris Christie, Governor John Kasich, and Carly Fiorina. How serious are you really about electing a Republican for President in 2016? If you’re really serious, then you will admit that Trump cannot win the White House in 2016.

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Republicans Need Chris Christie to Win in 2016

Governor Chris Christie

(Photo Credit: The Washington Post)

If Republicans are serious about winning the White House in 2016, then they need to rally around New Jersey Governor Chris Christie right now. Although Hillary Clinton has not formally promulgated that she will run for the presidency in 2016, any clear thinking American already knows that she will run. Clinton is a formidable candidate for any of her Republican challengers.  At the present time, there’s no candidate who can defeat Clinton save Governor Chris Christie.  While Governor Christie may not be as conservative as many ultraconservative Republicans would like, he’s a reliable conservative Republican who can actually win the presidency in 2016.  It does Republicans no good to nominate an ultraconservative candidate like Rand Paul or Ted Cruz who has no chance of defeating Hillary Clinton.

Popular conservative pundits like Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh need to capitalize on the great opportunity they have to rally Republicans behind the only candidate who can defeat Hillary Clinton. Investing too much time in discourses about whether Governor Christie is conservative enough or a RINO (Republican in Name Only) is fruitless. He has a proven conservative record, even as governor of a blue state.  A conservative Republican who can appeal widely to Democrats, Independents and Republicans can win against Hillary Clinton in 2016.

While America is still a fundamentally conservative country, it is becoming less conservative than it was during the Reagan Revolution.  The Republican Party, therefore, has to recognize that it cannot fashion itself in the same likeness of the Party of the 1980s.  Governor Christie will help to lead the Republican Party in the direction it needs to go to begin winning presidential elections again.  Nominating Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, or Mike Huckabee would evince to the American people that the Republican Party is not ready to embrace the political realities of a post-1980s America.  The political milieu President Reagan enjoyed is gone.  Being too consumed by nostalgia for the days of Reagan only stifles the progress that’s needed for Republicans to take back the White House.

Although the days of Reagan are long gone, wide support for limited government, personal responsibility, pro-growth policies, low taxes, and local control is still present.  Republicans don’t, therefore, have to abandon their core principles to win elections.  They simply need to be more flexible on certain issues, including immigration reform, and they must focus less on social issues and have a more compassionate tone on divisive social issues like gay marriage and abortion.

Governor Christie opposes gay marriage and is pro-life.  He does not, however, let his positions on those aforementioned issues define who he is.  He favors pragmatism over ideology.  As Republicans are struggling nationally to get African-Americans, Hispanics, and young voters to vote for their candidates, Governor Christie proved that he could get enough of these voters to win the presidency over Hillary Clinton.  As a blue state Republican governor, Christie can market himself as someone who has a proven record of reaching across the political aisle to work with Democrats, Republicans and Independents to get things done to ameliorate the lives of Americans.

While many Republicans were upset with Governor Christie for working with President Obama to deliver aid to the denizens of New Jersey after Hurricane Sandy, Christie demonstrated to the nation that he is more concerned with his constituents than playing politics.  Independents and some Democrats will be impressed with Christie’s bipartisanship and will reward him with their vote for President.  Hillary Clinton is less known for bipartisanship; she’s known nationally for being a reliable liberal Democrat, which makes her more of a polarizing figure than Christie.  She has more name recognition than Christie, considering she’s been First Lady, Secretary of State, and U.S. Senator. President Clinton is still popular nationally, which will benefit his wife.  Christie’s national name recognition is constantly increasing, however.

Hillary Clinton will likely have to combat the anger of voters who are displeased with the economic performance of a Democratic President, President Obama.  Governor Christie can appear as a reasonable alternative to having another Clinton in office.  Yes, Clinton fatigue will help Governor Christie’s campaign for the presidency.  Many Americans are fed up with the destructive partisanship in Washington, D.C.  When they look at Chris Christie, they know they’re voting for someone who has a record of bipartisanship; a record that offers tremendous hope that Washington, D.C. can once again become a place where meaningful things can get done to improve the lives of the American people.

It was once widely thought that Republicans didn’t have the slightest chance to defeat Hillary Clinton, but too many people were focused on the wrong candidates.  The dominant focus should have always been on Governor Christie.  The polls are very close between Christie and Clinton, and one poll shows that Governor Christie not only wins against Clinton but also against all other popular potential Democratic candidates.

A Republican blue state governor could be much more attractive to more Americans than a reliable liberal former First Lady, Secretary of State, and U.S. Senator.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Open Letter to Todd Akin

Todd Akin

I need education about rape.

Dear Todd Akin:

Your recent comments discussing “legitimate rape” are offensive to rape victims and survivors and women in general.  While you have stated that you misspoke, your comments have placed you in a position where you cannot be an effective candidate for the Republican Party and cause many women to lack confidence in your judgment now and if you were to become a U.S. senator.  When you make comments that are not carefully articulated in the public domain, you’re not always going to be given an opportunity to revise and extend your remarks, especially comments made on the campaign trail.  Comments made on the campaign trail are not always given the “revise and extend” rights those in the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate enjoy.  You need to step aside and do what’s best for America, the state of Missouri and the Republican Party.

If you continue to stay in the U.S. Senate race in Missouri, you will demonstrate that you’re not committed to the interests of the American people but are more concerned with your personal ambitions.  While I can understand your desire to want to serve as a U.S. senator, you cannot let this desire prevent the people of Missouri from having a campaign about substantive issues rather than about “legitimate rape.”  To make such outrageous comments about rape, you prove you’re not ready to represent Missouri in the U.S. Senate.

The comments you made about rape are absurd.  You will have other ways in which you can serve the American people and you will have future opportunities to run for elected office.  This is not the time for you, however.  Your word choice has cost you an opportunity to win the U.S. Senate seat.  In your attempt to evince just how pro-life you are, you went too far.  Although you have some great ideas and positions on other issues, you will be linked to your “legitimate rape” comments.  Do the American people a favor and drop out of the campaign.

Please drop out of the campaign immediately!

Sincerely,

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Extend the Bush Tax Cuts for Everyone

In a time when the economy is as horrible as it is now, one of the best ways to stimulate it is to give tax cuts to everyone. When you give rich people tax cuts, then they can hire poor people. When you cut taxes for the middle class, they have more money to go out and spend it to drive economic recovery and growth. If the Bush tax cuts are not extended, we will experience the largest tax increase in American history. This is certainly not the time when the American people can withstand the largest tax increase in American history. If Congress does not extend the Bush tax cuts, then this could result in weakening the economy so severely we may not experience true economic recovery until years from now. This is not the time to engage in class warfare. People need jobs!

People don’t want to have to depend on food stamps and unemployment checks—they need jobs! By extending the Bush tax cuts, Congress can give rich people, you know the people who actually provide the jobs, the ability to do more hiring and the ability to purchase essential things they need for their businesses, which further grows the economy. Congressional democrats are trying to play politics with the Bush tax cuts by saying that they want to first pass the middle class tax cuts, and then discuss the tax cuts for people making $250,000 and above a year. They know that Congressional republicans are not going to vote for a bill that is going to raise taxes on people making $250,000 or more. It sounds nice to be for cutting taxes for the middle class, but really what Congressional democrats are saying is they want to raise taxes on those making $250,000 or more a year. I want Congressional democrats to know that making $250,000 a year in many places in America does not qualify as being rich.

For those of you, and I am speaking to many of my friends too, who love to talk about the Bush tax cuts are mainly for the wealthiest people in America, I want you to know that they also pay the overwhelming majority of the taxes in America. If you cannot bring yourself to even begin to think about supporting a tax cut that would go to a wealthy person, then I want you to think about the last time somebody poor or just barely making it hired you. You should not have to think too long because a poor person or person barely making it never has hired you. Therefore, while it may sound good to say that you are not supporting the Bush tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires, what you are really saying is you are not supporting economic growth and efforts to improve unemployment.

In these tough economic times, be willing to give up being an ideologue for the sake of ameliorating our economy and to help our hurting people to weather this turbulent economic tempest.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison