Papastefan: Why NU students should vote Republican


Grant Papastefan, Columnist

There’s a notion among left-leaning Americans that the Republican Party is for the rich, while the Democratic Party is for the common and struggling people. It’s a concept that has been perpetuated by Democratic candidates and not adequately refuted by Republicans.

But it simply is not true.

Although many wealthy people have a lot of influence (too much) in both political parties, the GOP does a much better job of addressing poverty and promoting policies that benefit the middle class. This is one of the primary reasons I will vote Republican, and hopefully I can convince you it is one of the reasons you should too.

The primary tenet of Republican economic policy can best be described as assisted self-determination. The idea is that it is the individual’s responsibility to make for themselves, while it is the government’s responsibility to ensure that they have a fair and equal opportunity to do so.

As highlighted on the GOP website, some key goals of Republican policy are “tax relief to grow the economy and create jobs,” a balanced budget, and “more American jobs, higher wages and a better standard of living.”

Republicans believe the only sustainable way to meet these goals is through an organic, economically sound process, rather than through an excessive amount of government intervention, an idea supported by the failure of central-planning and big government throughout history.

Now that I’ve highlighted the fundamental principles of Republican economics, I’d like to dispel some rumors that may be keeping you from considering voting Republican.

The first is the idea that Republican tax policies unfairly favor the wealthy. This notion is actually not true. If you look at current Republican candidates’ tax plans, many of them support substantial tax breaks for all income brackets. Additionally, the GOP platform highlights the need for a “tax system that is simple, transparent, flatter and fair,” recognizing that the current system is inaccessible for the average citizen.

The second falsehood I must rectify is the claim that Republicans do not care about helping the poor. It was the Republican-controlled Congress of 1996 that passed the Welfare Reform Act, giving states greater flexibility in distributing welfare. In addition to supporting affordable housing and job training, Republicans believe charities and faith-based organizations should receive tax breaks in exchange for helping the poor and needy.

Republican economic policy is the road to the future. Creating a self-sustaining economy is of the utmost importance. That said, Republicans do realize there will always be Americans in need of a boost or safety net. Founded on the principle that a fair playing field is enough to give anyone the opportunity to improve their economic condition, Republican economics benefit the most people in the most efficient way.

Furthermore, Republicans recognize that giving the government the unfettered ability to spend money is destined for inefficiency and corruption. For these reasons, among many others, you should vote Republican.

Grant Papastefan is a Bienen freshman. He can be contacted at [email protected]. If you would like to respond publicly to this column, send a Letter to the Editor to [email protected]. The views expressed in this piece do not necessarily reflect the views of all staff members of The Daily Northwestern.