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Issues Discussed in Republican Debates, Research Paper Example

Pages: 4

Words: 1129

Research Paper

The Republican Party organized several debates in preparation for the 2016 US presidential elections where several issues were discussed. Essentially, such debates provide an overall view that the citizenry could use to gauge the Republican Party’s stand as the next year’s presidential campaign approaches. Thus, the Republican Party, also commonly referred to as the Grand Old Party (GOP), through such debates would select the viable flag bearer candidate(Ehrenfreund web). An array of candidates participated in various Republican Party presidential debates such as current and former governors and senators, a retired neurosurgeon, an ordained minister, and a self-effacing businessman. Nonetheless, according to both Marist and Monmouth poll only five candidates were influential in previous four debates namely; Ben Carson, Donald Trump, Marco Rubio, Mike Huckabee, and Jeb Bush respectively. The Republican presidential hopefuls expressed their opinions on different issues facing the nation of which three appeared prime (Diamond, Jeremy). Therefore, the essay will discuss the three top issues that the five Republican candidates deliberated on previous debate stages.

Taxes

The tax policy issues are essential as they ultimately determine the public economic wellbeing. Thus, for a conclusive presidential campaign, the candidates needed to express their tax code simplification promise on how it becomes cheaper, easier and fairer for American public and businessmen. According to Tax Foundation, a nonpartisan organization, GOP candidates are suggesting to undertake tax cuts ranging from $2 trillion to $12 trillion over the coming decade (Phillips). Subsequently, to achieve such ambitious tax policy objective, the prime Republican candidates fronted a wide array of views. Huckabee and Carson proposed flat tax versions that significantly reduce the wealthiest Americans’ tax burdens. Moreover, as Carson proposed non-exemption for the society’s poor individuals, Huckabee proposed to levy a tax on consumption as opposed to income (Phillips).

Furthermore, Carson explained that when the government tax system entails richer people paying a higher tax, it becomes synonymous with the socialist system. While, Huckabee explained that a fair tax reform involves instituting a tax on consumption instead of penalizing productivity. Likewise, although Bush and Rubio agreed on low tax for the rich and tax code simplification proposals, they deferred on tax structure implementation (Diamond, Jeremy). Besides, Bush and Rubio maintained on preserving the current tax structure where higher tax rates are levied on greater incomes. The candidates further suggested maintenance and expansion of tax credits designed meant to aid middle-class families and working poor population. Lastly, although Trump has no detailed plan, he suggested a tax raise for the rich and middle-class tax reduction (Ehrenfreund: Washington post).

Abortion

Most Republican candidates are opposed to abortion legalization since GOP field is steadfastly anti-abortion. Nonetheless, the GOP candidates performed their best to quell extreme stances that regard to women’s reproductive health care access. For instance, during the last Fox News debate, former Arkansas governor, Mike Huckabee, and Senator Marco Rubio alluded that the Constitution guarantees protection for unborn children. Similarly, when debate moderator Megyn Kelly, asked Jeb Bush the same question, he reiterated the same that abortion ought to be illegal (Dreazen, De Luce, Hudson). However, it would be allowable in cases where the mother’s life would be the danger if she gave birth. Likewise the polls runner-up, Donald Trump, also favored abortion ban although his stand was ambiguous. Gauging on his new position on the debate stage, it was unclear on whether he endorses some candid exceptions for early pregnancies in women.

Additionally, the polls frontrunner, Ben Carson, had on varied occasions clearly alluded that he is pro-life and, therefore, opposes abortion. Nonetheless, Carson views that the final decisions rests on the individual women own choices. Although not commenting extensively on particular additional legal restrictions, he perceived that morality issues are difficult to legislate (Diamond, Jeremy). Hence, although abortion was a prime issue in previous debates, the issue seemed difficult to get consensus on. As the debate sessions continue, plenty of points need to be discussed on whether abortion ought to be banned and possible allowable exceptions for various health conditions that involve pregnant mothers.

Social Security and Medicare/ Entitlement

The costly America’s federal entitlement programs could provide full benefits for coming two decades. However, most analysts propose further adjustments to ensure they remain solvent for many generations. Hence, Republicans faced a political challenge in the Social Security and Medicare area. Specifically, conservative politicians advocate for long-term fiscal shortfalls in such programs through reduced benefits and taxes reduction (Phillips). The elderly constituency, which is important to Republicans, are skeptical of any benefits reduction reforms. Carson, Bush, and Rubio proposed various combination measures, which exempt current retirees, like wealthier Americans benefits limitation and retirement age appraisal. Specifically, Carsons explained that entitlement reform is meant to cater for the future generations and not the current elderly (Diamond, Jeremy). Furthermore, Carsons reiterated non-government involvement in such matter while Bush stated that both ‘medicare and medicare’ needed necessary adjustments.

Conversely, Huckabee and Trump opposed any benefits reductions measures as they view it as discriminatory especially when the elderly are also American citizens. Essentially, Huckabee stressed out that when elected he would ensure entitlements programs protection from funding cuts (Dreazen, De Luce, Hudson). While, Trump expressed a diverse opinion about Huckabee’s entitlement protection plan as a hoax in that Huckabee was unreliable in that promise. On his part, Trump suggested that he was the first GOP candidate to express the no cuts social security plan thought, dubbed ‘medicaid’ and ‘medicare.’ Hence, medicare and social security was a sensitive issue that most GOP candidates debated it safely (Dreazen, De Luce, Hudson).

Conclusion

As US presidential elections approaches, the GOP candidates have discussed various issues in varied rounds of debates aimed at wooing primary GOP voters. Consequently, three main issue stood out that the five top Republican candidates discussed. Firstly, tax policy reforms were discussed in various debates held where some candidates proposed for implementation of a flat tax structure while others advocated for the current structure. Secondly, the GOP also discussed the abortion legalization conversation where all candidates took an anti-abortion stand while a few fronted for allowable abortion exceptions. Thirdly, the Republican candidates also discussed the politically sensitive social security and medicare issue where some candidates campaigned for the reduction in entitlement benefits while others were opposed to entitlement reforms.

Works Cited

Ehrenfreund, Max. “3 key issues the Republicans might address at the debate.”Web blog post. Washington post. Web. Aug. 2015.

Dreazen, Yochi, Dan De Luce, John Hudson. ‘The Top 5 Things to Listen for in the First GOP Debate’. FP Report. Web. Aug. 2015.

Phillips, Amber. ‘The 6 big issues in Wednesday’s Republican debate’. Washington post. Web. Aug. 2015.

Diamond, Jeremy. ‘CNN’s Republican debate: Winners and losers’. CNN’s News. Web. Aug. 2015.

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