Run With Romney

We live with the perception that our views are somehow on a higher moral ground than the views of our opponents. For example, if someone is against abortion, he is, by default, against women’s rights, or so many of us conclude.

If you are a political-science-majoring college student who reads the New York Times proudly but ironically watches Fox News, it is impossible for you to consider how a middle-aged veteran living in the rural Midwest feels about gays in the military or abortion.

OK, it is not impossible; it just takes a lot of work and empathy to not dismiss that middle-aged veteran as old-fashioned or homophobic. If the Republican Party is reactionary, the Democratic Party is equally reactionary in pointing out how reactionary the Republican Party is. I have heard people say that if Mitt Romney wins the election, they are moving out of America. Nobody with a job and a family can manage to react this extremely, no matter who wins.

Presidential election is an incentive to exaggerate every American virtue and vice, and claim the moral high ground by holding the opponent responsible for all vices. Both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney have done equally well in blaming the other for the American tribulations.

I am a registered Democrat, but I will be casting my ballot for the Republican nominee, Mitt Romney, because his are the policies most likely to deliver practical results over ideological triumphs. I understand that this is an unpopular opinion.

President Obama has a nuanced approach to politics: political ideology must take precedence over policy. During the first two years of his presidency with the Democratic majority in Congress, the president chose to enact The Patient Protection and Affordability Care Act instead of dealing with the looming debt crises.

Indeed, health care reform is the defining result of the Obama presidency. But the reform was not as urgent as the unemployment rate or the deficit. Obama chose health care because it would more likely make the case for his reelection than his presidency. The president has not governed with the same ambition that he set his ideological agenda with.

Mitt Romney’s résumé is far more impressive than the president’s in terms of bipartisanship. As governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007, Romney worked with the Democratic legislature of Massachusetts to pass a landmark health care bill suited specifically for the state. Romney only wishes to repeal the Affordability Care Act so that it can be replaced by a better system: a state can have the authority to craft its own health care befitting that state specifically.

On foreign policy, Romney has been guided by “American exceptionalism” to take aggressive actions against Iran. He wishes to name China as a “currency manipulator” and curb the Chinese influence on the global economy. As for the American economy, Obama has ameliorated the 2008 crisis by increasing the national debt dramatically. At $14 trillion, the debt is a problem and a political tactic.

Romney believes in minimal government involvement in markets, especially health care, until the federal government has a balanced budget and deficit under control.

These are my reasons for voting for Mitt Romney. They are practical with minimal ideological incursions, because ideology in practice evokes aggression and ambivalence more than discussion. Aggression and ambivalence can be wholly justified because a person can choose to respond however he/she likes, but please, do consider the opponent.

Sumeet Singh is a third-year English major. He can be reached at sumees1@uci.edu.