Inclusiveness, Civility, & Respect: America Is For All Americans, All Ages, All Incomes, All Races & Ethnicities, All Faiths, Women & Men, Gay & Straight
I Am Running To Be A Congressman For All Americans. In 2014 I ran for Congress from Silicon Valley as a fiscally conservative, socially moderate, inclusive Republican. That will be difficult in 2016 without disavowing the intolerance coming from some in the Republican presidential campaign. Although it is early and we don’t know who the eventual nominee will be, I want to be clear that I am a California Inclusive Republican and I am not necessarily bound by what has been said or may be said by some of our national candidates.
I particularly condemn Donald Trump’s recent encouragement of brawling and violence at his campaign events. For me, this disqualifies him from this campaign, a red card for brawling. We must have civility and respect in our political discourse in order to have democracy. Otherwise, we have mob rule. Mr. Trump does not understand this. I will not vote for him if he is our nominee.
Barack Obama is the real problem, Donald Trump and his message of intolerance are another sign of the problem. I get that Mr. Trump is the front-runner among Republicans because, to borrow a line from the movie, the Republicans are “mad as hell and they are not going to take it anymore.”
But, it is a trap that Obama, Clinton, and the Democrats have set to discredit the Republicans as the party of hate, intolerance, and now brawling. We must not fall into it. If we do, we will discredit ourselves as fit to govern, and rightly so, and we will get another eight years of what we have already had under Obama and Clinton.
Why do I say that? In 1994 California Republicans under Governor Wilson held all the statewide offices and passed Prop. 187 to curb state spending on illegal immigrants. Whites supported Prop. 187, but many Hispanics and Asians were repelled by it. Since then, Republicans have become politically irrelevant in California, with its rapidly growing Hispanic and Asian population. They have not won a statewide election in years. Jason Riley made this exact point recently in a Wall Street Journal article (How Trump-Style Politics Turned California Into a Blue State, Jan. 5, 2016).
That is what is going to happen to the Republicans nationally if they adopt the racist, intolerant message of Trump and others. As Karl Rove wrote recently in the WSJ, “If Mr. Trump is its standard-bearer, the GOP will lose the White House and the Senate, and its majority in the House will fall dramatically. If the nominee is Ted Cruz the situation is still dicey.” In fact, if you take the current average of 20 non-U.S. oddsmakers, they give the Republicans only about a 34% chance of winning the White House in 2016. The Republican chances have dropped from about 43% before Mr. Trump emerged as the frontrunner in the primaries.
How can this be, considering the Obama/Clinton record of abject failure abroad and at home? Abroad, everything is a mess. The Middle East is in flames and chaos, sending terrorists to our shores. The Russians and Chinese are on the move. Our friends don’t trust us and our enemies don’t fear us. At home, the economy is still very shaky, held up mostly by massive borrowing and money printing by the government, setting us up for another massive economic crash, just like other money printers such as Greece, Argentina, Venezuela, China, Russia, and the European Central Bank. Recent economic weakness in the global economy portends that such a crash may already be underway.
Many of our young people have given up on the American dream of economic security, a home and a family. The gig economy has replaced the breadwinner economy. Crony capitalism/socialism works for Wall Street, not for Main Street, where middle and working class real incomes are falling. Obamacare is a disaster, millions are dumping those policies. Our inner cities and their schools are a disaster, with little hope of escape, close to rebellion.
Jobs for minority youth rose solidly under Ronald Reagan’s free enterprise policies while they have gone nowhere under Obama’s socialist redistribution policies. Indeed, a recent study found that minorities are doing better in opportunity-rich Republican states and cities than in those run by Democrats offering nothing more than a welfare agenda. As the Chinese proverb says, “Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day, teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime.” When the government gives out fish, it may fill the stomach but it empties the soul. It robs the man of his dignity and his worth in his own eyes and in the eyes of his family, his community, and his nation. And, when the government gives away too many of other people’s fish, they stop fishing and lay off their fishing crews. My message: if you really want to help minorities, vote Republican. Jason Riley reached a similar conclusion in his recent book, “Please Stop Helping Us: How Liberals Make It Harder For Blacks To Succeed.”
With all this, how can such a deeply flawed candidate as Clinton be winning? The answer is demographics. The Republican share of voters is now down to 28%. Been to a mall lately? That is what voters look like now, not what we see at our Republican meetings. Even if a Republican candidate gets all the votes of a fired up Republican base, that candidate is not even close to winning. And, if candidates fire up the base by turning off all the other voters at the mall, they will have no chance of winning.
Republican pollster Whit Ayers wrote last March that:
Republicans…must find a way to appeal to more nonwhite voters. If the GOP nominee in 2016 wins the same share of the white vote that Mr. Romney did—59%—then he or she will need 30% of nonwhites to be elected. That is far greater than the 17% of the nonwhite vote that Mr. Romney won in 2012, or the 19% John McCain won in 2008, or the 26% George W. Bush won in 2004.
As you can see, the Republican share of the non-white vote has dropped sharply since the last time the Republicans won the White House in 2004. We have the same problem with women, millennials, gays, and others. As Ronald Brownstein observed recently in the National Journal, “race, religion, and ethnicity divide the country between what it was and what it is becoming.” Republicans/conservatives can deny/bemoan/fight these changes and go the way of the Whigs or make the case that their values are for all Americans and build a new and durable majority.
Republicans must tell Americans we respect and value them all, that American values of freedom, dignity, self-respect, limited government, the opportunity to work hard to better yourself and your family are for all Americans, young and old, poor, middle class, and wealthy, white and non-white, women and men, gay and straight, and people of all faiths. We must be one nation with liberty and justice for all. That is how we set America back on the right path.
We have a movement of Reform Republicans in California who have opened the party to all. I am proud to be in that group. It is the future of the party in California and in America. In her recent State of the Union Response, South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, the daughter of Indian immigrants, eloquently exemplified that future.
In 2014 I ran as a fiscally conservative, socially moderate Republican for Congress from Silicon Valley, the ethnically and culturally diverse center of free enterprise, entrepreneurship, and economic dynamo for the country and the world. Even though Republicans make up only 23% of the voters in this district, despite that I had never run for public office before, despite being outspent ten to one by a long-time Democratic incumbent, and with a shoestring budget, I got 33% of the vote, more votes than any other Republican running for Congress from the Bay Area. This can work!