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by Robert W - NC

Distributed among the recipients below

Change is an empty word until you fill it with all of the broken promises, all of the animosity and all of the arrogance that has been leveled upon the Nation, and as a Conservative Republican, and I have had and seen enough! This Nation has been set on a course of fearmongering, societal division and wrongheaded economic policy, and we have now seen the results in full bloom. I believed in the "compassionate conservatism" movement of 2000, and I am embarrassed to admit it was an absolute failure that did nothing more than embolden far-right idealouges to take control of my party. Bush's failures and Obama's message throughout his campaign have forced me to question my beliefs; I feel that I have reconciled these beliefs, and what we must all do as Americans to ensure a better future for ourselves and those that follow.

First of all, I am disgusted by the abuse of 'liberty' and 'patriotism' by my own party as a wedge issue, as if these are words were somehow trademarked by the Republicans in 1776. Last time I looked, my party has not fostered these two American guidepaths well at all on our own!

Secondly, I reject the scare tactics of socialism by the GOP, as we live in a progressively taxed society which is as just as any other tax system in the world. To tweak such a system one way or the other is no more or less 'socialistic', if one were to be truly objective on the matter. This Nation cannot continue ballooning deficits and it cannot continue this pointless engagement in Iraq. There is a point in time where the blood and treasury both run dry, and we are nearing that point. It is time to focus on the pivotal front in the war against terror in Afghanistan, and it is time to rebuild America's credibility as a world leader who will command a humanity first, democracy second agenda.

Lastly, we need to explore re-defining civil rights, and provide to all people of any race, sex, religion and orientation full and equal rights, including a woman's right to choose, in a way that is combined with the constitutional amendment of separation of church and state. Too many of our laws regarding civil rights in its current form have religious underpinnings that have no place in a free society. Perhaps that is too complicated an issue to ask people to come together on, but with the continuing saga of racial, ethnical and sexual discrimination in this country, if we truly want to be a Nation that survives the next century, we need to give everyone a full stake. After all, how can we ask those whom we disregard to stand along side of us in the worst of times when we ignore their most simple of demands?

After saying all this, I may sound much less "Conservative", but anyone with a soul and who truly cares and recognizes what has happened to this Nation in recent years cannot be happy with the status quo. I am outraged and saddened by what my party has done. I don't know where I will stand in the future, but right now, I am taking a stand with the Democrats and I full heartedly endorse an Obama and Democratic Congress mandate.

To anyone who reads this, I suggest you send it to as many of your Republican friends. My words may enrage them, or it may bring them out of the closet and to the polls for the Democrats. One way or the other, its time to make one final push and vote for what is right.

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Mark Begich


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Kay Hagan


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Bruce Lunsford


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Jim Martin


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Al Franken


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Ronnie Musgrove


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