Sunday, October 11, 2015

Why do Republicans keep voting for Republican presidential candidates?

I have quite a few conservative friends, some who identify as Republican and some who don't, and I have noticed something a bit odd about them. You see most of my Democrat friends hold reasonably high opinions of Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, even Jimmy Carter, everyone's favorite presidential punching bag, is held in rather high esteem. It seems to me, however, that Republicans aren't as big of fans of the recent Republican presidents. Let's take a look at the recent presidents elected by Republicans.

George W. Bush - Not terribly popular with anyone, especially Republicans. He grew the federal debt (after eliminating the surplus), he got America into a war we had no business being in, and he bailed out the big banks and automakers. Not the favorite president of most Republicans.

George H.W. Bush - During his presidential campaign Bush said "Read my lips, no new taxes!" and as president he broke this promise. This has made him a minor hero among Democrats but not among Republicans. Like father, like son, neither of the Bush presidents is terribly popular among Republicans.

Ronald Reagan - Before you start thinking I have gone crazy, yes, I know that Ronald Reagan is very popular among Republicans. Consider for a second which Ronald Reagan we are talking about though. Republicans love the horseback riding, flag waving, cowboy hat wearing, Hollywood actor Ronald Reagan, but they really aren't that big of fans of President Ronald Reagan. Reagan raised taxes several times, he sold arms to Iran, he made the federal debt soar, he created a program to give amnesty to millions of undocumented workers, oh, and he also supported gun control in the Brady Bill. They love the Reagan image, but the actual Reagan presidency? Most of the Republicans I have spoke with don't seem to be big fans.

Gerald Ford - Ford is a bit of an outlier as he was never elected, but many Republicans still don't like him because he pardoned President Nixon. That of course bring us to...

Richard Nixon - Do I really have to say why Republicans, and most everyone else, don't think very highly of Nixon? Of course it just wasn't the national embarrassment of Watergate, Republicans also don't tend to care for the way he made friendly with communist China or his plans for universal single payer health care or some of his other liberal leanings. Again, he is not a hero of the Republican Party.

So who do the Republicans like? Of course they have a high regard for Lincoln, the first Republican president, but often times you will also hear them offering praise for Truman and Kennedy, neither of whom were Republicans. I'm not saying that Republicans love all the presidents the Democrats have elected, let's face it, they don't have many (any) nice things to say about Clinton or Obama, but if they don't like their own presidents and they don't like the Democrats who should they vote for?

I think the time has come for Republicans to finally realize that they just shouldn't vote, that way they can reduce their chances of being disappointed. Plus it will be fairly easy to change over the presses that make the "I didn't vote for Obama!" bumper stickers so they can print out "I didn't vote for anybody!" bumper stickers and they can feel free to complain about whoever gets elected. Seems like it would be a win for Republicans and a win for America as well.