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California desperately needs a resurgence of rationalism in the Republican Party

California desperately needs a resurgence of rationalism in the Republican Party
Steve Frank, left, Travis Allen and Jessica Patterson, candidates for the chair of the California Republican Party, attend a meeting of GOP delegates at the Costa Mesa Hilton on Jan. 21. (Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: If Republicans held a few key offices in California, they could try gerrymandering or voter suppression, which have worked well in other states. Lacking that opportunity, perhaps they should try winning back rational conservatives. (“Can’t live with Trump, can’t live without him: California Republicans’ challenging future,” Feb. 7)

My late father was a lifelong California Republican who believed in the conservatism of his era. Those Republicans made up the party of civil rights and equal opportunity when the Democrats held the “solid south.”

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Look at what they have become. They wield their offices like bludgeons. They promote a warped religion that worships wealth and defends bigotry. They are driving the nation into bankruptcy. They promote lies and corruption. The list goes on.

The problem precedes President Trump. The George W. Bush administration was more arrogant and incompetent than any administration in recent history. In 2004 my father held his nose and voted a straight Democratic ballot, including Sen. John F. Kerry for president and Sen. Barbara Boxer for reelection.

Republicans have descended even deeper since then. I don't like single-party governance in California, and I hope the Republicans will mount a rational resurgence.

Scott D. White, Claremont

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To the editor: I have an idea for those Republicans wondering about a leader for the California GOP: Why not find someone who backs policies that most people actually support?

Start with climate change. According to a recent Monmouth University poll, 78% of Americans say that climate change is behind more extreme weather and rising sea levels. That includes 64% of Republicans. Some Republican leaders, such as former Secretary of State George P. Shultz, have advocated for a carbon fee and dividend as a way of tackling it, but they’re a tiny minority.

Then there’s gun control. Ninety percent of the population wants some form of it, yet President Trump signed a bill last year that effectively makes it easier for people with mental illness to get guns.

And that’s only two policies.

Frances Mathews, Fullerton

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