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Web letter by James del Grosso: Extremists in danger of marginalizing Republican Party

Victoria Toensing’s piece, “Pro-life stance dooms inflexible Republicans” (Dec. 12), caught my eye. Her husband, Joseph diGenova, is a cousin of mine, and both served as lawyers in President Ronald Reagan’s Department of Justice. DiGenova was a top prosecutor in Washington, D.C. Their Republican loyalty is without question. My shock about Toensing’s piece was when she said she was a “moderate.” She went on to give a personal experience as to why.

Her concerns are some of my concerns. The radical approaches to issues that the average American faces daily sum up the Republicans’ inability to attract other voters except the hardcore base. Legislation that is an obvious attempt to disenfranchise blocs of voters, gerrymandering districts to favor the party, the decision not to compromise and electing subpar primary candidates who get elected to office are non-starters for a successful national party.

As long as we continue to lose elections nationally, run afraid of certain bogeymen and kid ourselves that we’re right and everyone else is wrong, we’re on our way to being very insignificant, party-wise. We either change or learn to be satisfied with winning local and state elections most of the time. Hooray for gerrymandering – forget about majorities in D.C. and forget about the presidency.

Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, chief of staff to Gen. Colin Powell, when asked to comment on the ills of the Republican Party, said the GOP is 60 percent racist. I don’t know how he came up with that figure, but I think it’s more. I’ve never seen religion, racism and pure hatred used as weapons as I did in the last two presidential elections.

If we can’t win on our ideas and accomplishments, then we don’t deserve to win. If we are so bankrupt of ideas – and how to present them – that would attract the majority of voters, then we need a full cleansing of the party. Unfortunately, the face of the party, to the average person of voting age, is the Ted Nugent types. Nasty, racist, vulgar, hateful, and – as Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana says – stupid.

JAMES DEL GROSSO

Fort Wayne

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