2012 Political Debate
Seniors Kara Hansen and Sean McCarthy talk politics
Photgraphs via Bryant Morrow
What is your general opinion of Barack Obama?
Senior Kara Hansen (KH): “He is arrogant and dishonest. I don’t trust him. He has an apparent disregard for the Constitution and the original founding values upon which this country was formed.
He became President of the United States without showing his birth certificate, while I could not even try out for club volleyball without showing mine.
He promised hope and change 4 years ago, but his ideas are so radical that he has to hide the details. He is still intentionally deceiving the American public in an attempt to fundamentally change this country from a Democratic Republic to an Autocratic Socialist Republic without coming out and saying it. He wants to redistribute America’s wealth and its power. He wants the government to be bigger but our military smaller.”
Senior Sean McCarthy (SM): “I think President Obama has a good vision for America. I feel like he is probably one of, if not the most progressive presidents we’ve had.”
What about Mitt Romney?
SM: “I think Mitt Romney is a likeable individual with a similar vision as Obama. He really showed an enthusiastic side of him at the first debate and feel like he really has a strong desire to help the country in the best way he knows how. I think both parties ultimately have the same vision and disagree on philosophical approaches.”
KH: “He is humble and honest and has been a tremendously successful business leader and state governor. I have confidence that he truly loves this country and that he will relentlessly defend the Constitution and the moral values that make this country great.”
Romney's tax record has been an important and contentious point among democrats. Do you consider this to be an important issue?
KH: “Yes, Romney has been extremely successful in business and made millions of dollars: he represents the American dream. Last year he only had to pay a 13% tax rate. Why, because he is now retired and living off the interest of his earnings, on which he would have paid the highest tax bracket of 38%. Therefore, that 13% tax he is now paying is a second tax on the money he already made. I think that this is important because the media makes it sound like he is trying to get around the tax code and not pay his fair share. The truth is that he is honestly paying way more taxes than most Americans.”
SM: “I do. I think if a political candidate is serious about maintaining trust with constituents then revealing tax records should not be a problem. I do think that all the hype about it has been a bit overdone and is an issue but at the same time there are more important things to be talking about.”
Obama has received a fair amount of flak from both sides about his spending. Do you think he is justified in spending so much? Has it helped?
SM: “I think a lot of candidates get flak the moment they start making decisions. Obama’s quasi-Keynesian Economic approach is a legitimate strategy for economic revival, however it wasn’t properly allocated. I think skepticism and criticism is always necessary when examining the decisions of those in power.”
KH: “No, he is not justified in spending and borrowing so much money. It hasn’t helped. After 4 years of his spending spree totaling 4 trillion dollars, the economy is now worse than when he was elected. Obama himself said that if he couldn’t get the economy turned around in three years then he would be a one term President. So, what is he doing campaigning for re-election?”
Healthcare is another hot topic in this year's debate, with Romney vowing to repeal it and Obama promising to keep it. What is your opinion on the Affordable Care Act?
KH: “It’s going to ruin America’s health care. Its going to cost more and deliver less personalized and less efficient medical services. I don’t trust the government to take over my health care.”
SM: “I think it’s a great step in the right direction. America is the only industrialized nation without a national healthcare system despite insistence from health and human rights group like the World Health Organization. The cost of healthcare in this country has been an issue for decades and Obama was really the first president to tackle it with an organized plan to reduce the cost and increase access.”
Same-sex marriage has been another point this year in the political arena. What do you think of Barack Obama's stance on gay marriage?
SM: “I am glad that he has come out in support of the LGBT community in his affirmation of same-sex marriage. He has been the most vocal advocate for the LGBT community than any other president in our nation’s history.”
KH: “Obama supports gay marriage and has shown his arrogance and disrespect for the Constitution by ordering the government to stop enforcing the Defense of Marriage Act. The president's constitutional obligation is to faithfully enforce federal laws, yet Obama believes he is above this law. I believe that marriage cannot be redefined by the President or Congress.”
Who do you think is liable to win and why?
KH: “The one who gets the most electoral votes, so to all you 18 year olds; get registered and vote for Mitt Romney for President.”
SM: “I think they both have a strong chance. There are many who are looking for the change that Romney proposes and many that feel that a vote for Obama will safeguard the things they hold dear. America is pretty diverse in terms of its ideologies and that we all get to participate in the governmental process is truly an amazing thing. No country does it quite like the United States in the sense that it is engrained in the social psyche that voting counts, dialogue in imperative, etc. A lot places around the world leave it alone and roll with the punches, and we’ve always refused to do that.”
- Bryant Morrow, Staff Writer and Photographer
- Bryant Morrow, Staff Writer and Photographer
Blueprint encourages all eligible seniors to go to the polls on Tuesday, November 6 and cast their vote for the 2012 Presidential election.