Every Republican voter that I have ever talked to in the South justifies their vote in one of the following ways; the tax argument, the family values argument and the strong defense argument. Let’s take these one at a time:
See the table in the link below (married filing jointly) which outlines the Bush tax cuts which became effective January 1, 2003. See Wikipedia - Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 . Note that households earning up to $46,700.00 got no tax cut, (with the exception of those earning between $12,000 and $14,000, from 15 percent to 10 percent). The median household income in the State of Alabama for the years 2002 – 2004 was $38,111.00. See US Census Bureau . Taxpayers in the highest bracket (over $311,950.00 annually) got a 3.6 percent reduction. A quick calculation reveals that the minimum tax reduction for the highest bracket is $11,230.20 annually, while the majority of taxpayers in Alabama get nothing. Most people in the State don’t earn $300,000.00 annually and thus allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire, to them, is basically meaningless. Yet, almost every blue collar Republican in the State will say that Democrats are going to raise your taxes. (Yeah, if you earn over $300,000.00 a year). I just don’t understand the logic, but there is no point in arguing.
Pro-life stance - Republicans have long held that abortion is wrong and that it should be illegal in most cases. To my way of thinking, the issue is not whether or not abortion is wrong, either legally or morally, it is who should be making that decision. (choice.) The issue involves moral and ethical considerations that should be left up to the individuals who are facing the issue. You cannot and we should not be legislating morals. I am not qualified to make a decision as to when life and thus rights begin, but apparently Republicans think they are. Republicans, in general, support the death penalty. Pro-life, as long as you are still in the womb, but woe be unto you if you have been born. Again, who among us is qualified to make the decision about whether someone lives or dies? I am not qualified to make that decision, but apparently Republicans think they are.
Same Sex Marriage – I posed a question to a friend of mine once when she said that homosexuality was wrong and that homosexuals should either change or become celibate. “Think about your sexuality as you are now, then put yourself into a society where homosexuality is the norm, would you be able to change yourself to conform with the norms of that society?” What threat do same sex marriages pose to the American family?
It just seems to me that conservatives take stands on some issues that conflict with stands they take on others. We don’t want you to have an abortion, but we don’t want you to have access to condoms or any information about family planning. We don’t want you to have an abortion, or family planning, but we also don’t want you to be on the welfare rolls. We don’t want you to have an abortion, we don’t want you to have condoms, we don’t want you on the welfare rolls, but we also don’t want to subsidize child care so you can work.
Their ideas on the family are not realistic.
In the last 8 years, we’ve invaded a country that posed no threat to us. We’ve captured foreign nationals, held them for years on end without charging them with anything. We’ve used “aggressive interrogation” on individuals to attempt to gain information, including waterboarding, beatings, intimidation, humiliation, sleep deprivation, temperature extremes, stress positions. All of this leaves a bad taste in my mouth and has harmed the reputation of the United States abroad. Admittedly, I don’t have all the facts and if someone shows me proof that these things were necessary, then I’ll concede the point, but for now I can’t imagine that any of this makes us safer.
The bottom line is that the Republican machine has done a good job in the South of herding the sheep. Just pour on the piety, make vague statements about taxes and defending the red, white and blue and you’ve got ‘em, hook, line and sinker.