The following is the response that was sent to the Republican National Committee in regards to their request as to why I have not donated.
March 19th, 2013
To the members of the Republican National Committee:
I recently received a letter in the mail asking why I had not yet donated to the RNC, and whether I had abandoned the party. I hope that you were sincere when you said you wanted to hear my concerns, because there are many things I want you to know.
I am a single, white, Catholic female in my early 20's. You need my vote, and you need it badly. I know I don't speak for everyone, but I speak for many who share my sentiments. The Republican Party needs to become more representative of the population as a whole, and it needs to happen now.
Earlier this week, Chairman Reince Priebus revealed the findings of the Growth and Opportunity Project, and I must say I was thoroughly disappointed. Though there were several good points made regarding the problem Republicans have had during the past two election cycles, many important issues were largely ignored.
I. What Happened to All the Compassionate Fiscal Conservatives?
The Republicans have a spending problem, despite the fact that the party is supposed to be a fiscally conservative alternative to the left. The GOP has done an excellent job of pointing out the Democrats’ constant desire to raise taxes and increase spending on entitlement programs. However, many of the Republicans in Congress want to spend the same amount of money on the military. Spending is spending, and its time the Republicans recognize this.
The Republican platform in the 2012 election was built around the idea that President Obama's policies have caused an unsustainable spending pattern and nearly insurmountable national debt. If this is true (which I believe it is), why did Speaker John Boehner recently say the United States does not have an immediate spending problem? The lack of a cohesive message has caused the party to fall apart at a time when the country needs fiscally conservative policies to help decrease the deficit and balance the budget. The Republican Party suffered greatly in the last election cycle by trying to paint President Obama and the Democrats as candidates to vote AGAINST, rather than making Governor Romney and the Republicans candidates to vote FOR.
There were several other problems with the Republican campaign in 2012, in an election when a compassionate, fiscally conservative candidate should have handily defeated President Obama. The Growth and Opportunity Project cites the failure to properly spread the Republican message as a primary reason for the Republican party's loss in November. This is incorrect, because the message was clear. The "47% comments" made by Governor Romney were damning, and reflected the major problem with the current GOP: The Republican Party is perceived as an angry, homogenous and out of touch group that does not care about the average citizen.
There are many flaws with some of our current programs (i.e. Medicare, Social Security, Welfare, etc.), but to imply that ALL individuals who benefit from these systems are only seeking a handout is narrow-minded and patently false. Bring back compassionate conservatism by reforming these programs to help those who truly need assistance can benefit from them, while also ensuring that the systems cannot be abused by those who do seek to take unfair advantage of them. Keep my motto in mind: “Do not punish those in need for the sake of those with greed”.
II. Why Are We In a State of Perpetual War?
This October will mark the 12th anniversary of the beginning of the War in Afghanistan, meaning I will have lived in a country at war for exactly half my life. President Obama ran on a seemingly anti-war platform in 2008, but the United States has continued to deepen its involvement in the Middle East. Now is the time to call for an end to the constant and ever-increasing amount of warfare our nation is engaged in.
In January, Senator Rand Paul called for Congress to stop sending military aid to Egypt, and received only 19 votes in favor of his proposal. At a time when tensions between the United States and most Middle Eastern nations are rising, and when our nation cannot afford to stretch its purse strings anymore, why would any fiscal conservative vote against this bill?
Earlier this month, Senator Paul once again showed how far off course the Republican Party has gone. During the course of his 13 hour filibuster, only 12 Republicans and 1 Democrat joined him to dispute the White House's notion that it was acceptable to use drones on American citizens on United States soil.
The following afternoon, in a horrific display, Senators John McCain (who I am now ashamed to admit I voted for in 2008) and Lindsey Graham publicly lambasted Senator Paul for his efforts. Senator Paul had received an overwhelmingly positive response from liberals and conservatives alike, and spending two minutes on any news or social media site would have provided McCain and Lindsey with that knowledge. If the people largely supported Senator Paul, and our elected representatives are supposed to be the voice of the people, who exactly were Senators McCain and Lindsey representing?
III. When Will the GOP Realize That Opposing Marriage Equality is an Unpopular Stance?
Speaking again about representing the people: The Republican party is fighting a losing battle on the issue of same-sex marriage. Recent surveys have shown that an increasing majority of Americans support same-sex marriage, yet many in the Republican Party remain staunchly opposed to the idea. While not all Republicans are against marriage equality, many vocal proponents of traditional marriage have given the entire party a bad name.
The Republican Party appears hypocritical on the issue of marriage equality, especially when compared to how strongly they maintain their stance on gun rights. I support gun rights and responsible gun ownership. I am a believer in the 2nd Amendment and love to see Republicans come to its defense. Sadly, Republicans are quick to defend the Bill of Rights and the Constitution when their guns are in danger, but then act as if the Constitution is merely optional when discussing same-sex marriage.
Years have been wasted discussing the option of a Constitutional amendment to define marriage as being between "a man and a woman". Honestly, that is outrageous! Banning two consenting adults from receiving a GOVERNMENT-ISSUED marriage license (and the benefits, rights and protections that accompany it) on RELIGIOUS grounds is simply absurd. Religious conservatives have successfully fought the Obamacare HHS mandate, claiming it infringes upon religious freedom, but are quick to use religion as the argument against offering equal marriage rights to all individuals. The Republican Party needs to represent ALL individuals who believe in civil liberties and fiscal conservatism, not just the ones who happen to have religious objections towards marriage equality. The party should favor a neutral tax code, which removes any mention of marriage, so as to be inclusive and respect the beliefs of all individuals. The Republicans are supposed to be the party of small government, but you've alienated people by becoming the party of big religion. 1 in 5 Americans does not have any religious affiliation, and the Republican Party is in no position to ignore 20% of the American people.
IV. Education is Key
The Republicans say they want a nation where innovative and intelligent men and women can succeed and live out their own "American Dream", but the unfortunate truth is that our nation's education system is preventing these dreams from being realized. The education system is deeply flawed, and neither major party has offered any lasting solutions to alleviate the problems faced by students today. No Child Left Behind was the last major Republican contribution to education, but it was an abject failure and states are thankfully now allowed to repeal the law. It is time to empower the states to improve their education systems and focus on the needs of the students and teachers inside the classroom, rather than rely on standardized testing to serve as one of the only barometers for measuring success. Meaningful education reform will preserve the American Dream, and now is the time to make it happen.
I realize that you probably receive many letters, phone calls and emails each day, but I hope that you were able to take the time to hear my concerns. I am hopeful that one day the GOP will represent the American people better than it has in the recent past, because I want to support a party that will protect my civil liberties and help keep my financial future secure. Most importantly, I would like to be able to cast my vote for a candidate I support, rather than just cast a vote against someone else. Until that time comes, I am sorry to say that you have lost my respect, you have lost my donation and you have most certainly lost my vote.