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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Soundbites: Sept. 30

An unwinnable war

Is it feasible to run for office as a Democrat in Arizona? Taking into account the widespread distaste for Democrats, adding in the generally conservative nature of the state, and then sprinkling in a little Nogales mayoral scandal and the almost assured Republican backlash that will follow, and you’ve got the makings of an abysmal mid-term election for the Democratic Party.

The recent arrest charges of bribery against the Democratic mayor of Nogales, Ariz., Octavio Garcia Von Borstel, is the next step in the wrong direction for the public image of the Democratic Party and will likely widen the gap between them and the Republican Party.

The conservative nature of most Arizona residents already made this year’s mid-term elections an uphill battle for Democrats. Now that a Democrat has been caught bribing businesses, the Republican candidates in Arizona have all the ammunition they’ll need to slaughter the Democrats this fall. Try as gubernatorial hopeful Terry Goddard and many Democrats might to disassociate themselves with Von Borstel, the damage is already done. Republicans should be able to sit back and coast to victory this November. Jan Brewer can now sit silently at any future debate or press conference before she bursts out with nervous laughter, all the while never answering the questions asked of her. She might even be able to get away with one or two more accusations of desert beheadings. John McCain can continue to attack the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, and the worst thing that could happen is the Arizona Democrats could return to where they were yesterday, which was still noticeably behind.

— Storm Byrd is a political science sophomore. He is also a student organizer for UA Votes, which is run by Arizona Students’ Association. He can be reached at

House Republican ‘pledge’ more fantasy than reality

Last week, House Republican leaders unveiled their “”Pledge to America,”” an outline of what they would do under a Republican majority. As usual, this document makes basic claims about reducing the deficit, repealing ObamaCare, cutting spending and cutting taxes, but offers nothing of substance. Its writers failed to mention that extending the Bush tax cuts will raise the deficit and what it will actually take to balance the budget.  

According to Howard Gleckman of the Tax Policy Center, a nonpartisan think tank, the only way to balance the budget by 2020 with the Bush tax cuts intact and preserving Social Security, Medicare and defense spending is to eliminate all other aspects of government, including homeland security, Medicaid, national parks and even Congress itself.

It’s impossible to balance the budget without raising taxes or substantially altering popular entitlement programs. The “”Pledge”” offers no solutions to the huge problems currently plaguing the U.S. economy. House Republicans continue to rely on popular, yet impractical, rallying cries that sit well with voters, but accomplish absolutely nothing. Unfortunately, most Americans will fail to look at the numbers and the complexity of the current crisis and will be unable to realize that the Republican Party will be just as ineffective and incompetent as they claim the Democrats to be.

— Andrew Shepherd is a political science senior. He can be reached at

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