GUEST COLUMN: Biden, Harris aren't socialists

Stephen Jones

Having been a Republican since 1952 and serving as research director for the Texas Republican Party, the Republican nominee for Oklahoma attorney general in 1974 and the U.S. Senate in 1990, a member of the Republican State Finance Committee, and even briefly as state chairman, I am not able to support Republicans this year. I intend to vote for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.

I don’t agree with all of their positions, but they are honorable, dedicated and knowledgeable public officials and competent. The president has none of those qualities.

1. Neither Joe Biden nor Kamala Harris is a socialist, as the president claims, and the Democratic Party is not a socialist party. Statements to the contrary are false. Since 1932, every presidential election the Republican Party claims the Democratic Party is socialist. It has never been true.

2. We now know the president, despite his claims, is not a successful wealthy businessman, and in fact has paid almost no federal income taxes for 20 years. He owes $300 million in debt over the next four years.

3. We now know that the president was fully briefed and informed by the intelligence community of the dangers of the COVID-19 pandemic before a single American had died. The failure to take action is directly laid at the feet of the Republican Party and its president.

4. Republican senators have demonstrated hypocrisy in rushing to confirm a Supreme Court nominee when they would not even give the lead prosecutor in the Oklahoma City bombing a hearing for a vacant Supreme Court seat eight months before the 2016 election. Lindsey Graham has been shown as the unmitigated liar and hypocrite that he is.

The Republican Party of Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt and Dwight Eisenhower has instead become a ragtag band of anti-intellectualism, paranoia and nativist sentiments. It more closely resembles the Know Nothing party of the 1856 presidential election when it nominated Millard Fillmore (a competent president half a decade earlier) in the three-way presidential contest. The party came in third, carrying only the state of Maryland, and was swept into the dustbin of history. A new party had arisen in the free states of the North and the West (the Republican Party) led by a youthful, dashing general, John C. Frémont, and four years later Abraham Lincoln. So strong was the Republican identification with the nation that in the 80 years after 1860, the Democrats elected only three presidents.

Who among those leaders would recognize us today, a party which inflicted casualty and death on tens and thousands of American young men and women in a war of choice based upon a lie, teeter on the brink of a financial abyss, and create the deaths of tens of thousands of lives that might have been saved if a less reality-challenged president had occupied the White House. Neither history nor the American people will be forgiving of the Republican Party. It has inflicted a never-ending wrong. Would Lincoln, Roosevelt, Taft, Eisenhower or Reagan recognize the Republican Party today? Hardly!

Earlier this year, the writer and prominent Republican political consultant Stuart Stevens’ book, “It Was All a Lie,” exposes the brutal truth of the contemporary Republican Party with its title.

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Jones, an Enid-based attorney, served as the lead defense attorney for Timothy McVeigh. Jones previously worked as Richard Nixon's personal research assistant and assisted him with speeches and drafting articles and public statements prior to the Republican National Convention in 1964.

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