Santorum (Finally) Drops Out: Can we talk about real issues now?

Santorum (Finally) Drops Out:  Can we talk about real issues now?

In case you blinked, Rick Santorum suspended his presidential campaign yesterday (which for all intents and purposes means that he has finally dropped out of the race).  Now that Mitt Romney has won the unofficial race to be the most conservative, the most anti-women’s right, and most anti-colored candidate that the Republican Party can offer to the country, it’s fair to say that the real race for the White House has finally begun.

The Republican primary was ugly, and in the fleeting moments that I paid attention to it, it reminded me of a lost season of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills/Michigan Avenue/5th Avenue, as time and time again I saw very rich people trying their best to convince the world that they could relate to the rest of us.  Even if I suspended logic and allowed myself to believe that this was true, I was reminded everyday of each of these candidates detachment from the plight of everyday Americans when I listened to them argue over continental fences that will likely never be built and pontificate on whether promoting college-education encouraged liberalism.

Now that Mitt Romney has found himself the victor of a long-fought primary, I wonder how he reconciles the things that he has said over the past year with the things that he has stood for over the course of his career?  Akin to John McCain’s presidential run in 2008, it appears that in effort to prove himself as the most “right” and white, he too will begin the general election as only as a hallow shell of the leader that he worked his life to become.  Though it appears to have been a “fail” of epic proportions, I wonder whether his calculated decision to be the “conservative of choice” will serve him well?   Has the country truly become more concerned with preserving the values of evangelical Christians than helping poor people get healthcare?  Only time will tell.

I ask these questions because though I am a dedicated supporter of our President, in my lifetime, I’d like to see a good ole’ fashioned political fight based on actual values and relevant issues, as opposed to obscure notions of what makes someone a real American or whether we should close the borders to Mexicans, Canadians, Audis, and bootleg DVDs.  (Although I am glad that there is sweeping bi-partisan support for Chinese made Apple products.)  I’d like to see an election that prioritizes viable solutions that will help people as opposed to rhetoric that merely sustains political parties and institutions.

It is my hope that time won’t be wasted on issues of law that have been settled by the court.  Abortion is legal, slavery is not, and corporations can buy elections.  Let’s move on from these issues.  Most people I know owe more on their mortgage then their house is worth and don’t have any expectation of paying off the college loans while they are alive.  For the first time in the history of this country, the financial and health prospects for children are less hopeful than that of their parents.  No one knows how they will retire.  The lack of access to credit makes the illusion of starting your own business a far-fetched fallacy.  People are protected by laws that allow them to unjustifiably kill others.

We have real problems that require real solutions.

So I’m getting my popcorn bucket ready.  I’ve chosen my side but I’m hoping to see a good fight.  One that will push each side to think outside of the box, one that will encourage good debate and innovative solutions, and one that will lead us a better place than where our country currently stands.

 

[Picture courtesy of Politico.com]

Filed under: Politics

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  • Wow, "right and white". Not seeing too much through the race-colored glasses, are you.

    The one person who is removed from the reality of daily living is President Obama. He cares not a twit about the cost of gas, the price of food or the employment situation. He spends his time dividing the country with his -- do I dare say-- "black attacks", while not inciting class issues too.

    Obama is not thinking totally INSIDE the box, the same old tired box of progressives and liberals and socialists who have destroyed every area of US life they supposedly "care" about.

    Oh, yes, like a little kid, nothing is his fault. I think the man is psychologically damaged by his uncaring parents, who thought nothing of dumping him off for years at a time. It is sad.

    By the way, Obama will win, because the fix is in. No amount of legal ballots will replace the illegal ones, which is so simple as going in and asking for Eric Holders ballot card.

    In 4.5 years the answer to the question of being better off or not will be the same as now: no.

    If you were intellectually honest instead of biased by race, you would admit the mess that Obama is gleefully direction.

  • Wow, "right and white". Not seeing too much through the race-colored glasses, are you.

    The one person who is removed from the reality of daily living is President Obama. He cares not a twit about the cost of gas, the price of food or the employment situation. He spends his time dividing the country with his -- do I dare say-- "black attacks", while not inciting class issues too.

    Obama is thinking totally INSIDE the box, the same old tired box of progressives and liberals and socialists who have destroyed every area of US life they supposedly "care" about.

    Oh, yes, like a little kid, nothing is his fault. I think the man is psychologically damaged by his uncaring parents, who thought nothing of dumping him off for years at a time. It is sad.

    By the way, Obama will win, because the fix is in. No amount of legal ballots will replace the illegal ones, which is so simple as going in and asking for Eric Holders ballot card.

    In 4.5 years the answer to the question of being better off or not will be the same as now: no.

    If you were intellectually honest instead of biased by race, you would admit the mess that Obama is gleefully direction.

  • Hey Richard. Thanks for your comment. Let me explain the "right and white" comment.

    I bring attention to Mitt being White not because I have an issue with him being White -- clearly 99 percent of our past presidents have been White and I don't foresee another ethnic candidate on the horizon any time soon.

    I brought attention to him being "White and right" because of the growing lack of inclusion of the Republican party's policies over the past decade - which seem to have reached a fever pitch during this primary season.

    Honestly, I've written about this in the past because in theory, I agree with some Republican positions. However, Republicans seem to spend a lot of time overtly equating Blacks with welfare and emphasizing notions of what it means to be a real American with imagery that is not inclusive of people who are non-White.

    I won't debate your other points because you are entitled to your own opinion, whether we agree or not. However, understand that with the issues that plague those around me, I want the best person in office and I could care less what they look like.

    I just so happen to think the best person is our President.

  • In reply to Kay S:

    Richard,

    One more thing. I think all levels of government are operating "inside the box" right now which is why it is my hope that through this election process we will see new solutions. Competition begets innovation.

  • Kay, you are entitled of course to believe that Obama is the best choice to be in office, but can you please explain what exact "policies" of the Republican Party are not "inclusive"?

    No official Republican position or candidate has overtly or covertly suggested that black people are equated with welfare. In fact, it is well known to about the thickest log on the forest floor that there are more whites on welfare than blacks. I think if you want imagery of non-inclusion you would do well to look at the "war room" of Jim Messina and Obama's re-election organization. Lots of blanco-Americans and few, if any, people of color. The photo is now famous. Check it out.

    I view Obama as a racist. In his own words he has disparaged his own mother as being "a typical white woman". What does that mean? What does it mean from the man who would be President?

    As far as original thinking, Obama is espousing the same government cradle to grave mentality that has driven the country into debt at a faster rate than anytime in history.

    You can expect more division, class warfare, "tax the rich", "it is not my fault" from Obama when he is re-elected. And all his fomenting of trouble will not help you, me or anybody in your community one bit. The Democrats have about 70 years of failed policies, and nobody holds them accountable. They all have good intentions, but the results speak for themselves. The idea that you can take other peoples money and give it to others is fine --- until you run out of other peoples money. We have run out.

    The Democratic party excludes all those who do not support the increasingly leftist and fringe attitudes. There is no "inclusion" for anybody who differs in the opinion that government is not the grantor of all rights and the provider of all services. In fact, the Obama election position is to write of white working class people. Some inclusion, no?

    It's sad, but had I made a comment such as "white and right" but applying to Obama or any black candidate, I would be branded as a racist. You know this, and I know this. This is what is so tiring.

    You will get your wish, as Romney is a weak candidate for a number of reasons, but I challenge you to reflect back some 4.5 years from now and honestly evaluate whether Obama was a good steward of the country. He has wanted to "fundamentally" change this country, and he has. Does a person want to fundamentally change what he likes, loves or respects? No. So what does he want to change the country into? The Dreams of his Father, perhaps, those hard-core Marxist dreams of his father? I think so.

    Talk to me in about 4.5. ;--->

  • In reply to Richard Davis:

    Hi Richard,

    I saw your comment on this post a few days ago and wanted to take some time to digest everything that you mentioned. Let me start off with saying, while I don't agree with you I can partially understand your perspective and frustration. 1) I'm not sure if Obama saying that his mom was a "typical White woman" was demeaning in any way. If people asked me about my parents, or even myself, it's not beyond me to say that they are your "typical Black parents" or that I am your "typical Black woman". I don't think its a far stretch to say that he meant it as a synonym for "average Jane" or to say that his mom was non descript. But to be fair, I understand why it may have rubbed you the wrong way, especially if you see him to be racially divisive. Again, I don't agree but I do see where you are coming from.

    You challenged me to give you official Republican policies that are divisive and in the upcoming weeks, I'm sure that I will write another post on it. ;) However, what it seems as though you are asking me to do is to draw a distinction between the Republican Party and the leaders that represents it - which is not realistic. Just as you draw numerous parallels between Obama's agenda and that of the DNC...I think it's fair for people to draw the same parallels between the leaders of the Republican party and their agenda.

    I am also not sure if Obama's policies has led to more national debt than those of George W.

    As far as your challenge to me to think ahead 4.5 years, I believe my reflection of Obama will deem him as a good steward of our country. Is he or his policies perfect? No. No. and No. However, when I look at the options on the table, I think he has the most integrity which speaks volumes considering that he is a politician.

    Thanks for your comment Richard. I appreciate your passion. I'm sorry that it took so long for me to respond, but I wanted to give your comment the consideration and thought that it deserved.

  • "Does a person want to fundamentally change what he likes, loves or respects?" The answer - yes, if he loves it enough. It's called tough love in parenting magazines, and just being honest elsewhere Richard.
    The "you're either with us or you're unpatriotic" view of Bush was both dangerous and juvenile. To think that this country doesn't need fundamental change, in my opinion (which I believe I'm allowed) is to ignore the glaring problems we have in health care, education (on many levels), etc, etc.
    Whatever your solutions to the problems in this country, the fact is, there are deep, ingrained problems that need solutions; admitting this does not mean you don't love your country. Sheesh.

  • In reply to Expat in Chicago:

    I agree Expat, and thanks for your comment.

  • "Real issues"? How is such a discussion possible when Obama and Romney have essentially the same views on everything from health care to war? They might as well be in the same party, because clearly their policies and philosophies are one and the same.

  • In reply to RealitySlap:

    Reality Slap,

    Thanks for your comment. Talking about real issues is my dream...my daytime fantasy. Whether it actually happens for all the reasons that you mentioned is another story. Maybe their similarities is a good thing? I don't know...However, if the election is filled with random scandals or controversies over child rearing techniques, then I'm tuning out.

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    Kay S

    Kay Smith is a Chicago-based freelance writer and blogger who focuses on race, politics and urban culture. Having worked on public policy at the state, regional, city and community level, her opinions have been featured in the Chicago SunTimes and a host of news websites (under very mysterious sounding pseudonyms). Follow her on Twitter @kaywillsmith or contact her at kaywilliamsmith@gmail.com.

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