- - Thursday, September 8, 2016

We are officially in bizarro world. And for me, I am officially boldly going where I have never been before.

I am an undecided voter.

Since 1980, when I was first able to cast a vote for president, I have never been an undecided voter. In every race, I knew who I wanted early in the primary season, and regardless of whether that candidate won or lost, I knew who I would vote for in the general.

Not this year.

Previous elections were easy: Look at the Republican nominee and I knew who I would vote for. I wasn’t happy voting for either John McCain or Mitt Romney but accepted doing so as a vote for the lesser of two evils. But after 2012, I vowed that would never happen again.

This year there are four choices on the ballot. The first is Hillary Clinton. I like to refer to Democrats as the Party of Treason and Hillary Clinton exemplifies that. As the matriarch of the Clinton crime family, she is clearly the most corrupt, most unfit person in the history of the nation to be a nominee for president.

There are a few alleged Republicans who are endorsing Mrs. Clinton, claiming they cannot support a Donald Trump presidency.

There is an alternative to the poster child for political corruption in America. That is Gary Johnson and the Libertarian Party. Granted the Libertarians would have had a great year this year, if they had actually nominated a Libertarian instead of a couple of liberal Republicans, but 2016 is going down in history as the year of missed opportunities.

The third choice is a principled abstention. No one has earned my vote so I can simply, as a matter of principle, elect not to vote in the presidential election.

And then there is Donald Trump.

Mr. Trump has run the most improbable campaign in the history of America politics. His selling point is, “I’m not crooked Hillary.” That isn’t enough for principled conservatives, many like myself, who are still angry about the way he treated Ted Cruz. Mr.  Trump has done nothing to try and reach out to conservatives and unify the Party.

Some conservatives remain absolutely committed to the #NeverTrump movement. Others, such as conservative leader and talk show host Mark Levin have said they will vote for Mr. Trump, albeit unenthusiastically.

As we get closer to Election Day, I realize I have to make a decision. Who am I going to vote for?

The question really comes down to the issue of what could Donald Trump say that would get me to go ahead and pull the lever for him?

My biggest political concern is liberty. Big government is the antitheses of liberty. Government and liberty are the proverbial zero sum game. When government is grown, it is always grown at the expense of personal liberty.

There are two things Donald Trump could do that would get me to vote him.

When Ronald Reagan became president in 1981, the first thing he did was to freeze government hiring. The freeze lasted about ninety days. A large and oppressive federal government is the biggest threat to liberty. If Donald Trump wants to reduce the size of government, a promise to freeze government hiring for not 90 days, but for the entirety of his tenure as president would be a remarkable promise. If Mr. Trump were to serve eight years and freeze all government hiring (except for a small number of absolutely essential hires, for the CIA or NSA, for example), he would shrink the size of government, simply through attrition to about half of what it is today.

The second thing Mr. Trump could do would be to embrace GRAC. GRAC or the Government Realignment and Closure Commission, is something I have written about in the past. It is the civilian version of the military Base Realignment and Closure Commission.

The concept is simple. There are never any real budget cuts or cuts in the size of government because powerful senators and congressmen work to keep their pet projects alive. The GRAC plan involves the creation of a commission that will go through the non-defense budget and look for programs that are duplicative, wasteful, completely riddled with fraud or have just been complete failures. The list of proposed cuts would be sent to Congress, where Congress can only vote up or down on the bill. No amendments would be allowed, so that powerful congressmen and senators cannot protect their pet projects.

As a businessman, both of these concepts should resonate with Mr. Trump. He understands the need to keep both employees and programs under control and to cut both as needed.

This year should have been a great year for the Republican Party. It could have been, if they had nominated a Republican. 2016, truly is the year of lost opportunities. But now, we are stuck with what we have.

Will I vote for Donald Trump this November?

The way things stand now, no.

But if Donald Trump were to embrace both of those ideas, this November I would probably pull the lever for him.

 

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