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Letter: Reagan started GOPs disdain of government, and it lives on
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On one hand, the Republicans embarrassing inability to repeal or reform a law that they have been crusading against for the last seven years is somewhat shocking. One would only assume that after so many years of patiently waiting for this opportunity, they would be more than ready to act when they regained majority power and their long-awaited moment of truth finally arrived.

But on the other hand, last week’s debacle really shouldn’t come as a surprise at all. Incompetence has become the defining characteristic of the modern GOP. Why is this? I think the answer is simple. Republicans despise the institution of government and therefore lack the ability to operate efficiently within that institution. It would be akin to asking someone who hates football to go put on a uniform and score seven touchdowns for a team that they don’t even believe should have been in town in the first place.

The specter of President Ronald Reagan maintains a heavy presence within the Republican Party. The trademark of Reagan’s legacy is one of a man who practically transformed disdain of government into a pop culture phenomenon. After eight years of the Reagan presidency, the ideals of Ayn Rand and William Buckley were no longer confined to the lecture halls of universities or the meeting rooms of conservative think tanks. Those ideals became prime topics of discussion at the dinner tables of middle class families. Ironically gaining support from those who would soon be hurt the most by that very ideology.

So now here we are in the year 2017. Assuming the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch is approved by the U.S. Senate, the Republicans will have gained control of all three branches of federal government and a majority of statehouses around the country. Yet despite all of the electoral power they currently hold, they still lack the core competence to achieve what has been the highest priority of their party for the better part of a decade.

This is no longer a governing party. This is a party hell bent on the dismantling the institution of government and truthfully have no ideas or intent on efficiently operating it. Hopefully the vast majority of Americans will finally come to see this for what it is and choose to remedy the situation at ballot boxes all across the nation.

Gabe Shippy

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