You will decide in November

Donald Trump does not deserve to be re-elected. His behavior since he assumed the presidency has damaged our national values. His ethics are a cause for concern. Great presidents “bind up the nation’s wounds” and heal its injuries. Trump divides us.

Taxes: With Trump’s 2018 tax cut, the wealthiest got the biggest benefit. He slashed corporate tax rates from 35 to 21%. Each year he refuses to disclose his tax return. Truckers, nurses, farmers, teachers, carpenters, factory and office workers pay taxes. Does Trump’s nondisclosure suggest bankruptcies, failure to pay taxes, foreign connections? You decide.

Religion: He uses religion to further his political goals. He is simply not a man of faith as most of us would understand that term. His photo holding a Bible in front of a church was for political gain and nothing more. He insulted the sacred ground he stood on. Does he preach a gospel of self-interest? You decide.

Truth: Trump makes false statements on a consistent basis. His inauguration crowd was larger than Obama’s. It wasn’t. He passed Veterans Choice. He didn’t. Russia is not targeting our election even as our intelligence services said otherwise. It is. Does he know the difference between truth and falsehood? You decide.

The Press: The Constitution itself emphasizes the importance of a free press. Trump claimed “fake news” when the press questioned his actions. The “press” includes your local newspaper. Newspapers of all sizes keep local, county, state, and our national government honest. The press knocks on closed doors and shines light in dark corners. Is the press untrustworthy? You decide.

Associates: Trump’s friends and political appointees are troublesome. His Secretary of Agriculture insulted the family farm with his comment, “Go big or go home.” A number are convicted felons. His former chief political strategist has been arrested for defrauding contributors related to “We Build the Wall.” Is he believable when he says, “I hire the best people”? You decide.

Public Health: Trump’s failure to recognize the growing danger of the Covid-19 virus placed all of us in danger. On Feb. 19 he suggested that it would “weaken when we get…into the warmer weather.” On Feb. 27 he said “It’s going to disappear. One day it’s like a miracle – It will disappear.” As I write this, over 185,000 of our fellow Americans have died. Did our nation’s citizens deserve a better response? You decide.

For almost four years our country has weathered his assault on common sense and goodwill. His abuses of power and threats have wounded our national spirit. His insults and lies have corroded the very fabric of who we are as a people. When he departs Washington, be it now or in January of 2025, he will leave a legacy of vindictiveness, mismanagement and ill will.

As citizens in a democracy we will face a major decision on Tuesday, Nov. 3. Regardless of the result, you and I will play a major role in the outcome. Will we choose an honest person guided by a higher calling to lead us in 2020? You and I will decide.

Joe Severa

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