The election of 2016 was an election that has taken America on a path that is becoming detrimental to the Republican Party and to our country.

Once a Republican, I learned early on the Republican Party did not reflect my views nor support the middle class. Today the party professes to stand with the middle class but there is no evidence to support it. Look at any legislation passed by the party and see that none has enhanced the middle class. Over the years the party has moved further from middle class America. The middle class, under their administration has declined. Not since the Clinton era has the middle class made up more than 60 percent.

Since the late 60′s with Nixon and his “Southern Strategy”, Reagan and his assault on Affirmative Action, the disaster of George W. Bush with his wars and collapse of the economy and currently Trump with his incompetence and alt right leanings, the party has moved further from the middle class.

Since the election of Trump, our country has reached a level I did not think was possible. This president will do and say anything that benefits “him” and not our country. Since elected, he has proven to be a pathological liar. For example, he insists that he won the popular vote except for the “fraud” of 3 million voters. Claims no one on his team has ever met with the Russians, and will bring back coal and steel jobs, etc.

While I did not vote for Trump, I wished him well because his success would be America’s. He has shown a complete lack of understanding of politics, a lack of understanding of our constitution, no understanding of foreign policy, and has created an environment that says it ok to be disrespectful and hateful to each other.

Since Trump’s election, we have become the laughing stock of the world. America has lost its ability to influence world issues. During the G20 meeting, he was completely ignored. He wants us to be isolationist. We have tried this before. It gave us Hitler. He has shown incompetence regarding everything but Twitter, which further illustrates his incompetence.

Consumer confidence has fallen, retail growth has stalled, foreign trade is not good and there have been more scandals in six months than in both Bush and Obama’s administrations combined. While the stock market has gone up, it’s based on anticipated infrastructure and tax policy changes. Positions that are essential to the functioning of our government has not been appointed and our political institutions have lost confidence in his ability to tell the truth and function coherently.

Conflicts of interest exist, nepotism is at its highest level, collusion with Russia, lack of a coherent economic policy and further turmoil in health care. Asia is a mess. N. Korea continues to fire missiles and Russia is playing us like a fiddle. NATO sees us a weak and undependable. Our trading partners are moving toward China and environmental protection is being ignored.

This administration has done nothing to “Make America Great”. Many of us were hoping good things would happen. They have not and based on what I’ve seen up to this point, will not.

Responsible Republicans, when a “cancer was growing” with Nixon, stepped up and told him, he had to resign for the good of the country. Now, the Republican party makes excuses. Congress has stalled, our economy is stalling and our friends around the world see us as weak and can no longer be counted on. Jobs have not happened, confidence in our government to function is dissipating and our citizens are becoming more cynical.

Americans, we are better than this. I ask my Republican friends to stand up for the good of their party and the good of America. It is time to say, “enough is enough”.

Gary Clark lives in Clermont

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From the Left Column July 30, 2017

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