The first GOP presidential debate is just weeks away and the contestants have yet to be determined. While much of the spotlight falls, as usual, on Donald Trump, the Republican field this election cycle is deeper than ever.
Whether intentional or not, the Republican National Committee (RNC) has rigged the rules of the game by instituting a set of criteria that are so onerous and poorly designed that only billionaire, establishment-backed candidates are guaranteed to be in the running. scenery.
That is not what our party is about: We are the party of free speech, debate and the exchange of ideas. With 16 months to go before the general elections, the Republicans should have as many voices as the scenario allows. Anything less than that is elitism.
Currently, the RNC requires each candidate to have 40,000 donors to qualify for the debate. Candidates are then required to submit their donor information to the RNC. The situation is so ridiculous that North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum is now offering $20 gift cards to donors who give his presidential campaign as little as $1, just to clear the RNC’s artificial and arbitrary threshold.
I’m running for president to give back to the country that has given so much to me and my family, not to serve as a piggy bank for a political party.
Given the current rules in place, and given that Trump is unlikely to appear in the early debates, the Republicans may well not have a single pro-MAGA, America-first candidate on stage, leaving the vast majority of voters unrepresented Republican primaries. Without someone like me, the debate would be filled with anti-Trump politicians firing shot after shot at the MAGA movement, with no one to defend it.
With a field as deep as this, the general rule of thumb is to expand public discourse, not restrict it. Republicans should invite all of the most credible White House contenders to the debate stage. Restricting speech is the way of the regressive left, obsessed with censorship on college campuses and in corporate boardrooms. Republicans have long championed free speech, and expanding the arena for debate is yet another sign of commitment to the US Constitution.
I am not Trump. I’m not Ron DeSantis. While I respect my main opponents and agree on many issues, it’s too early in the process to artificially narrow the field. I know I have something to contribute to our national discourse, and once I’m on that debate stage, I know Republican primary voters will agree.
I was born and raised in South Central Los Angeles, so I know what doesn’t work from a public policy perspective. I have seen firsthand how decades of Democratic rule have turned California into an unaffordable dystopia. I have seen our communities destroyed by crime and lawlessness, a problem exacerbated by the lack of fathers in the home. Fatherlessness continues to wreak havoc in the black community and other parts of America. Millions of children, and not just black children, are entering the world without a father at home married to a mother, and the Democrats act as if the welfare state will somehow fix that.
In Joe Biden’s America, Republicans need strong candidates who will grab the attention of left-wing Democrats and call attention to our most pressing issues. I simply cannot ignore the George Soros-funded district attorneys who refuse to prosecute violent criminals and empty our cells. I’m on a mission to expose Soros’s district attorneys who are downgrading charges to felonies, including for drug dealers and armed robbers. I cannot stand idly by as cities like Chicago become war zones in 2023.
Nor can I ignore the cynical and indifferent politicians who are driving America into fiscal ruin. The national debt is currently around 32 trillion dollars. The US budget deficit is expected to top $1 trillion this year, and that doesn’t even include the unfunded liabilities that amount to borrowing more and more from countries like China. We are in the red due to outrageous federal spending, which exceeds $6 trillion per year.
The problems are endless, and Americans need to hear concrete, conservative solutions from a wide range of experts. Broadening the debate stage would allow candidates to put their respective policy solutions on the table, empowering primary voters to choose the best ones.
To combat crime, I have proposed model legislation that states can implement to prevent Soros’s district attorneys from coming to power and hold them accountable if they are already in place. Recognizing that not all states are the same, my legislation can be tailored on a case-by-case basis to screen district attorney and attorney general candidates based on each state’s unique constitution and a wide range of qualifications for the office.
To curb the welfare state, my proposal isto 10 percent of US gross domestic product (GDP), and then attribute real consequences to exceeding it. The way I see it, ignoring the cap should result in the president and all sitting members of Congress losing their right to run for re-election in the next cycle. Fiscal irresponsibility must be punished, or there will never be accountability in Washington, DC
These are just two examples of political solutions to America’s problems. I would be honored to explain them further on the debate stage, just as I would be honored to hear the other proposals put forward by my fellow debaters.
Let’s not put artificial and arbitrary limits on the Republican Party, or on conservative ideas that can help the American people. Come on the 23rdrd August, Republicans need more debate, not less.
Larry Elder is a Republican candidate for President of the United States in 2024. He is the author of “As Goes California: My Mission to Rescue the Golden State and Save the Nation.”
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