To the Editor,

The election is coming up too soon and many have not done their homework yet on who would be the best candidates to vote for. This election will determine whether we remain with and strengthen our hard  won and fought for democracy or dive into the abyss of authoritarianism. The lines are already drawn at the presidential level. President Biden and the Democratic Party have already demonstrated robust loyalty to constitutional order, honoring our commitments in the world order, and doing the work of governing for the “common good.” On the other hand ex-President Trump and the MAGA Republican Party he controls proudly proclaim they would tear up the constitution, alienate our foreign partners while supporting our enemies, target our department of justice firewall, denigrate those who have served and died…just to name a few stated goals. 

Despite his traitorous rhetoric Trump appears to be leading against honorable, loyal, very capable, experienced legislator, President Joe Biden. whose tasks following the carnage of his predecessor’s term were daunting. Yet, his time in office produced significant improvements across the broad range of essential government services and foreign relations.

Many voters who have registered and voted Republican in the past have hard choices to make. The former party no longer exists. It is now the “Trumplican” Party. Even though out of office, little legislation passes through Congress unless supported by the former president. Well qualified Republican candidates for congress and senate back away unless blessed by him.

In order to regain all lost under Trump, we must use this election to select qualified governing officials to reunite  under the umbrella of the constitution, laws, and policies enacted through legislative processes. That’s called Democracy in action. 

We can no longer depend on the courts’ independence from political influence. Our laws are increasingly disregarded through clever lawyering and delays in prosecution. Unfortunately, the Republican Party has been hijacked and sent on a course of conservative, religious fervor that has roll backed significant progressive legislation while enriching the rich and powerful and taking away many civil rights. Recent cases are the Supreme Court’s rollback of abortion rights and shrugging off our essential friends and partners in the world community who we rely on for our national defense and economic trading. 

How could the person who caused that carnage be leading in the early polls?  It may come down to human’s attraction to belonging to groups with common beliefs such as religions and political parties/politicians. We find it hard to break away even though feeling betrayed but breaking away provides opportunity to explore other options. For this critical election cycle take a hard, critical look at the parties and candidates, what they stand for in general and what their approach is for putting the country back on course. For Democrat policies, it’s easy. Their history of accomplishment, party platform and current plans for moving forward are readily available. For Republican policies 

and plans, even easier. There are none. Policies are made up on the fly by the winners’ prejudices and self interests. What then would you be voting for?

If you normally vote Republican, but choose to vote Democrat this election, you can stand tall when honoring the flag. If Democrats win our country and all we have worked and sacrificed for will be saved and become even stronger. If Trump and Republicans win and carry out their strategy to dismantle our form of government, we will be living under Trumplican unwritten laws.  The current flag will have lost its meaning. Might just as well have one with a swastika on it. 

Lee Purrier, 

Park Rapids, Minn.