Response to Republican Primary Debate

I had intended to do a live video with my response, however, our recording equipment is having some technical issues, so I will have to write my response this evening.

The very first take away I got from the debate was that both candidates, Romney and Kennedy, tried too hard to associate themselves with President Trump. My response to this is simple: if the President is right on an issue, I will back him 100%. If the President is wrong, I will be a voice raised in opposition. There are no party lines with me, so I do not have to worry about risking anything should he be right or wrong. I will be able to stick with principles above politics.

The second takeaway I feel needs a response were the candidates responding to the deficit and debt in the United States. Neither one really gave a clear answer on how they would work to accomplish this. My plan to begin addressing this is as follows:

  1. Support of a balanced budget amendment that would specifically tie in that you cannot raise taxes in order to make up the difference and no member of the House or Senate will get paid until the budget is balanced under revenue.
  2.  Cutting the Department of Defense budget by 50%. This will still leave us with enough that we spend more than the next five nations combined, but puts us on a path of defense instead of intervention around the globe.
  3.  One issue, one vote. I would push to ensure that you cannot add on unrelated spending measures to bills. If it is not within the scope of the bill’s intent, it doesn’t belong in that bill.

Those are three things we can work on to start the process of stabilizing our country.

The next issue, where I know that there will be a clear contrast: I absolutely support patients in Utah and back the Medical Cannabis Initiative. Further, I would push to end the war on drugs which has been a tantamount failure, and has only succeeded in giving us the largest incarcerated population in the world, ruined lives, enriched cartels, and increased violence along the border.

Moving on to the next issue, that both seemed to fall fairly in line with the Republican talking points of border walls and immigration: all Libertarians ask is that there be a check in process so we can do a background check. Shy of that, if someone wants to work or live here, they should be able to. When labor and capital cannot cross borders, eventually armies will. We should be a beacon to the world for freedom, and restricting people trying to better their lives is not becoming of a liberty oriented country.

The last point I would like to address was the question brought up about Veteran health care. This is where I do break a little from the Libertarian platform, and state that we absolutely do need to uphold the promises made to veterans who served this country. To do so, I would introduce the following, ad as a veteran who has navigated this process, understand better than either of the two Republican candidates:

  1. Eliminate the medical side of the VA, replacing it with an open market system where veterans having service connected disabilities can be issued a medical card good at any hospital or clinic of their choosing. No more wait times for appointments, months long waiting for care. The assets of the medical side would be sold to private business and the proceeds applied to the debt.
  2. Introduction of the 0% Plan. Essentially, any veteran who has been involved in combat operations, or an explosion, would be given an immediate 0% rating for disability for Traumatic Brain Injury or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as applicable. This gives them immediate access to medical services without waiting to be rated by the board.
  3. The budget that originally went to the staff of the VA medical centers and clinics would immediately be used to address the backlog of veterans returning from the Middle East. This will ensure more people can be hired to evaluate and get veterans processed faster.

These are the main points I wanted to address from this evening. I invite you to share these ideas with your friends and family members in Utah so they know there is someone with actual ideas to help make things better in America.

Thank you.

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