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Ah, another political election is underway, just in time to interrupt one of the most intense seasons of American Idol, which, incidentally, has a higher voter turnout than political elections these days. Is it any wonder our country is in trouble? This political season, is America going to vote for who they “like,” as they do on American Idol? Will they vote for who they think is a “nice guy,” or who has a well-known name or a fancier suit? Or are citizens going to vote for candidates based on the principles they stand for?

I love Idaho, and, as a regular visitor to many Eastern Idaho communities, I have many friends in Preston. Having been the regional manager of an organization that educates the public on conservative issues for more than 15 years, I have a vested interest in educating Idaho communities on the facts.

As I read the April 29th letter to the editor beautifully written by Rebecca Davis encouraging votes for her father, Dave Radford, I was touched by her sentimental stories, as I am sure many of you were…until her emotional letter turned into a political assault on Representative Chad Christensen.

Now, I’d like to share my perspective from the other side of the story. As I finished reading Rebecca’s letter, I was left asking: “What did her father tell her about the events in Meridian and what does it have to do with why her father would be a better choice than the incumbent, Representative Chad Christensen? Additionally, how would someone from Arizona know more about what really happened at Kliener Park than people that were there? As it happens, I have spoken to both the lady spoken of in Rebecca’s article and the arresting police department leadership both that are friends of mine.

I also wondered how Rebecca was taught by her father as a child to accurately identify a “true conservative” from one promoting “socialist policies,” as she stated. As a former political candidate in Idaho, myself, I am very aware of the political games people play by manipulating words in order to sway people emotionally. In Idaho, the political game is largely between Republican candidates vying for recognition as being more of a “true conservative” than their opponents. Many candidates use heartwarming language in their campaigns, calling themselves, “Proudly Republican,” and claiming to be someone who has a love of God and country. Some even differentiate themselves by going so far as to boast of being a candidate who prays at every political meeting. Individuals fitting this profile are often assumed to be the epitome of traditional Americanism. But what is traditional Americanism? Isn’t it, at its root, Constitutionalism? If “true conservatism” is really definable, I’d say it means upholding the U.S. and Idaho Constitutions.

Based on his voting record, Rep. Christensen was recently ranked by the Idaho Freedom Foundation’s Freedom Index as being the most conservative legislator in Idaho. Yet, he is being labeled as a person on the “fringe right,” implying that he is somehow far removed from the Republican Party platform and, therefore, from traditional Americanism, by default. Or is it the current “Establishment Neo-Con Republicans that have become far removed from traditional Americanism and the original Republican Party platform? How can we know when only Establishment Neo-Cons are allowed to create a one-sided definition of what it means to be a “true conservative?”

Representative Christensen not only upholds the Constitution of Idaho and the Constitution of the United States, but he holds other government officials accountable when they fail to adhere to the Constitution and the Republican Party platform. According to his actions, one would think Rep. Christensen is actually the embodiment of a true conservative.

Think about this for a minute: if “establishment” Neo-Con Republicans hate “Constitutionalists” (their collective term, not mine) more than Democrats and our State is becoming more socialist under Establishment Neo-Con Republican control, is anyone truly thinking critically about what it means to be a “true conservative?” Establishment Republicans have attempted to control the narrative on what “true conservatism” is for too long, and, in the end, how do beautiful words compete with the facts? Voters should care more about what candidates DO than being enamored by their beautiful words.

So, Preston, you have two choices and, although I do not officially endorse candidates, you can. You can listen to the emotionally-based fluff and vote from a superficial understanding or you can dig deeper and learn more about what your candidates truly support.

Tom Munds

24467 Barbara Lane

Caldwell, ID 83607

208-861-6405

constitutiontom@gmail.com

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