By Don C. Reed

“… in a way I am on the ticket — because this is also a referendum about me”, said Donald Trump.

Since the President so clearly wishes the mid-term elections to be a referendum on him, we should comply with his wish.

First, consider patriotism. Trump appears to take pride in not helping the nation. When accused of paying little or no taxes, he laughed it off, saying “Not paying taxes makes me smart!”. If everyone had that attitude, who would pay for the military, or Social Security?

He attacks environmental science. Global warming? “A hoax!” he says, while Florida is bashed by hurricanes, and drought turns California hillsides dry as tinder, with fire season all year round.

Respect for women? He mocks them, from his insulting “Look at that face!” comment about Presidential contender Carly Fiorina, even referring to interviewer Megyn Kelly’s menstrual cycle, “bleeding out of her wherever”,

He even bragged that he can molest women and get away with it. “When you’re a star, you get away with anything. Grab’em by the p — y,” he said, on tape.

This can hardly be dismissed as locker-room braggadocio, since twenty-two women have sued him for “sexual misconduct”.

His predecessor, President Barrack Obama, brought America back from the brink of a financial crisis and established a steady if slow-growing economy.

Trump brags about “his” economy providing many jobs — but many are at minimum wage. Some brave souls hold down two full-time jobs, double employment, but low-paying. For them, a home remains an impossible dream.

Trump ordered a reduction in the taxes of the rich and the giant corporations — then seemed surprised at the burgeoning national debt.

Healthcare for Americans? Republicans voted seventy times to end Obamacare and its required protections for pre-existing conditions,,,

Yet now, Trump claims, protecting pre-existing conditions is a Republican issue!

Remember the old saying, “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me?” Shall we be fooled 70 times and not remember?

Above all: do we want all governmental power in the hands of one political party, dominated by Mr. Trump??

All four pillars of the government — the House, the Senate, the Presidency and the Supreme Court — are controlled by Republicans.

Worse, the party of Trump seeks a permanent majority: using a variety of methods to invalidate Democratic votes.

GOP-controlled states suppress the votes of the poor, college students, persons with a disability, people of color — in other words, Democrats.

“In 2016, 14 states had new voting restrictions in place for the first time in a presidential election. Those 14 states were: Alabama, Arizona, Indiana, Kansas, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin.”

Since then other states — Arkansas, North Dakota, Georgia, Iowa Indiana and North Carolina have joined the ranks of the voter-suppressors.

Some of the means of reducing Democratic votes include: moving polling stations far from where minority voters live; requiring government-approved ID cards (driver’s licenses, primarily) from people too poor to own a car or who are blind and cannot drive; disqualifying voters whose registration cards vary even the slightest from their voting document: like if I sign my name Don Reed instead of Don C. Reed; students who attempt to vote in their college town instead of their home; gerrymandering voter districts for political advantage, and many more.

Once, Republicans were a force for positive change: a Grand Old Party. Lincoln led and inspired them, as did Teddy Roosevelt, and Dwight D. Eisenhower.

But the GOP is grand no more.

Today Honest Abe has been replaced by a President with a spectacular record of dishonesty: having made (to date) more than 5,000 lies, according to the Washington Post.

He endlessly attacks Democrats, the press, and all who disagree with him.

He praises those who use force against the press, which he calls the “enemy of the people”.

And when a dozen Democrats were targeted for murder by pipe bomb, he could not even be bothered to make a phone call to the survivors.

“Uh, if they wanted me to,” he said, “but I think we’ll probably pass”.

Maybe America should also pass this time, and not elect Republicans this year.

Remember in November!

Don C. Reed is a writer in Northern California.

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