As election nears, students differ on key issues

As election nears, students differ on key issues

by Josie RundlettGuest Writer

I’m a Republican. Yes, I said it. A real Republican.

I cast my very first ballot (on my 18th birthday, no less) for Jim Nussle in his gubernatorial race. I’ve worked for two years as an employee of a Republican legislator in the Iowa House of Representatives and was proud to intern for Iowa’s Senior Senator, Charles Grassley.

I frequently say that in the house I was raised in, we believe in two things: God and Chuck Grassley. I hate taxes, believe in family and the National Rifle Association and own not one, not two but three t-shirts with President Bush’s face emblazoned upon them.

If you’re still reading, I hope you’ll give me the ability to break the cookie cutter mold you have for Republicans, especially Republican women.

A big reason why I’m a Republican is because I’m very fiscally conservative. I believe that people should be able to keep their own money, and taxes are the bane of my existence. Every time I get a paycheck from any job I’m reminded why I’m a conservative. I hate paying taxes. It’s my money. I worked hard for it, I made it, and I’d like enough faith that I know how to best spend it.

Being a young female Republican puts me in an interesting category. To begin with, there aren’t a whole lot of young people involved, or genuinely interested in politics. I can’t count the number of times I hear from people in classes “Oh, you’re not a Republican.” No, actually I am.

What I’m not is a socially-conservative crazy person who believes the most effective way to legislate is to control every aspect of a citizen’s personal life. I believe the contrary. I think a government that governs best governs least.

I’ve never been one of those Americans that think Congress is doing a poor job because it went eight months without passing a major piece of legislation. I recognize one of the roles of government is to make sure bad laws aren’t passed.

While I will always have a great deal of pride for my country, one nation under God, I also believe that I like God, and so long as He knows that and I know that, things are fine, and there’s no reason to legislate about it.

After working with multiple politicians, I can recognize that it’s difficult to stand up to party leadership, and I respect anyone who can do that effectively. I will proudly be voting for the McCain/Palin ticket. I’ve always respected McCain because I think he’s a rogue figure in Congress.

I also think McCain has shown himself to be a shrewd politician without ever becoming a Washington insider. His choice of Palin was a brilliant one. The schism between the socially conservative and libertarian branches of the Republican Party could destroy us all, but McCain made the choice to unite both factions.

Palin is a great conservative woman. I am outraged and disappointed at the number of Americans that keep insisting McCain chose Palin as a running mate so he could win the “woman vote.”

The idea that a woman would ignore every relevant issue she cares about and vote for another woman, based on the fact that they share the same reproductive organs is insulting to me, and to all women of any party.

For the first time ever, the Republican Party is nominating a woman to be vice president! For a woman who has been asked dozens of times what politicians’ daughter or wife she is most like, instead of what president, this is inspiring. It shows that even though my party isn’t preaching change or promising utopia, we too are moving forward.