Republican Party on Government Reform

Party Platform


OpEd: Voter ID reduces Dem turnout by 8% and GOP by 3%

A recent academic paper analyzing the 2014 elections found that "a strict ID law could be expected to depress Latino turnout by 9.3 points, Black turnout by 8.6 points, and Asian American turnout by 12.5 points." After analyzing the data, the scholars found that "Democratic turnout drops by an estimated 8.8 percentage points in general elections when strict photo identification laws are in place," compared with just 3.6 percentage points for Republicans.

At a time when we should be making it easier for people to vote, Republican governors and legislatures acted quickly to do the exact opposite. They restricted early voting, eliminated same-day registration, and aggressively purged voter rolls. In 2016, fifteen states had new voting restrictions in place for the first time in a presidential election.

Source: Our Revolution, by Bernie Sanders, p.194 , Nov 15, 2016

Reform medical liability; it only benefits trial lawyers

The nation's medical liability system is broken, and it has imperiled patient access and imposed tremendous costs on our nation. The current system has forced doctors out of practicing in certain specialties. The current system also has imposed a tremendous burden in unnecessary costs on our national health care system and federal government. Estimates are that the failure to enact meaningful medical liability reform costs our nation's health care system as much as $300 billion each year.

In states without liability reform, the system does not serve anyone except trial lawyers. Injured patients are not compensated in a timely or equitable way.

Comprehensive medical liability reform including caps on non-economic damages will improve patients' access to quality care while reducing the overall cost of health care. We will also encourage states to continue to be laboratories of innovation to find the best means by which to reduce frivolous lawsuits & the practice of defensive medicine.

Source: A Better Way: Our Vision for Health Care Reform (GOP plan) , Jun 22, 2016

Limit "midnight regulations" made by outgoing administration

Proposal: Reform the Congressional Review Act to allow a single, up-or-down vote on "midnight regulations" issued by outgoing administrations.

A recurring problem that has thwarted the will of the voters and frustrated incoming administrations in recent decades is the problem of "midnight regulations." These are regulations--often major--that an outgoing administration rushes out the door during its last months in office. Midnight regulations impose the outgoing administration's agenda on the country before an incoming administration can stop it.

Since the Congressional Review Act's enactment in 1996, it has been crystal clear that agencies must submit new regulations to Congress for review and an opportunity to disapprove them. But over time, agencies have failed to submit their regulations, nearly 2,000 regulations from 2014 through 2015. House Republicans will tighten submission requirements so that no regulations escape Congress's review.

Source: A Better Way: Our Vision for Restoring the Constitution , Jun 16, 2016

Keep Electoral College; no national popular vote

We oppose the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact or any other scheme to abolish or distort the procedures of the Electoral College. We recognize that an unconstitutional effort to impose "national popular vote" would be a mortal threat to our federal system and a guarantee of corruption as every ballot box in every state would become a chance to steal the presidency.
Source: 2012 Republican Party Platform , Aug 27, 2012

Repeal McCain-Feingold; no contribution limits

The rights of citizenship do not stop at the ballot box. They include the free speech right to devote one's resources to whatever cause or candidate one supports. We oppose any restrictions or conditions that would discourage Americans from exercising their constitutional right to enter the political fray or limit their commitment to their ideals. As a result, we support repeal of the remaining sections of McCain- Feingold, support either raising or repealing contribution limits, and oppose passage of the DISCLOSE Act or any similar legislation designed to vitiate the Supreme Court's recent decisions protecting political speech in Citizens United. We insist that there should be no regulation of political speech on the Internet. By the same token, we oppose governmental censorship of speech through the so-called Fairness Doctrine or by government enforcement of speech codes, free speech zones, or other forms of "political correctness" on campus.
Source: 2012 Republican Party Platform , Aug 27, 2012

Require photo ID to fight voter fraud

Honest elections are the foundation of representative government. We support State efforts to ensure ballot access for the elderly, the handicapped, military personnel, and all authorized voters. For the same reason, we applaud legislation to require photo identification for voting and to prevent election fraud, particularly with regard to registration and absentee ballots. We support State laws that require proof of citizenship at the time of voter registration to protect our electoral system against a significant and growing form of voter fraud. Every time that a fraudulent vote is cast, it effectively cancels out a vote of a legitimate voter.

Voter fraud is political poison. It strikes at the heart of representative government. We call on every citizen, elected official, and member of the judiciary to preserve the integrity of the vote. We call for vigorous prosecution of voter fraud at the State and federal level.

Source: 2012 Republican Party Platform , Aug 27, 2012

No statehood for the District of Columbia

The nation's capital city, a special responsibility of the federal government, belongs both to its residents and to all Americans, millions of whom visit it every year. D.C.'s Republicans have been in the forefront of exposing and combating the chronic corruption among the city's top Democratic officials. We join their call for a non-partisan elected Attorney General to clean up the city's political culture and for congressional action to enforce the spirit of the Home Rule Act assuring minority representation on the City Council. After decades of inept one-party rule, the city's structural deficit demands congressional attention. We oppose statehood for the District of Columbia.
Source: 2012 Republican Party Platform , Aug 27, 2012

Stop activist judges from banning Pledge & Ten Commandments

In some states, activist judges are redefining the institution of marriage. The Pledge of Allegiance has already been invalidated by the courts once, and the Supreme Court’s ruling has left the Pledge in danger of being struck down again-not because the American people have rejected it, but because a handful of activist judges threaten to overturn commonsense and tradition. We believe that the self-proclaimed supremacy of these judicial activists is antithetical to the democratic ideals on which our nation was founded.

There are different ways to achieve that goal, such as using Article III of the Constitution to limit federal court jurisdiction; for example, in instances where judges are abusing their power by banning the use of “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance or prohibiting depictions of the Ten Commandments. Additionally, we condemn judicial activists and their unwarranted and unconstitutional restrictions on the free exercise of religion in the public square.

Source: 2004 Republican Party Platform, p. 78-79 , Sep 1, 2004

Reduce inefficient government, reward results

Bureaucracy will be reduced. If public services can be delivered more efficiently through the private sector, they will be privatized. A Republican president will establish accountability, reward performance, put civility back into the civil service, and restore dignity and ethics to the White House.
Source: Republican Platform adopted at GOP National Convention , Aug 12, 2000

Reform politics to encourage participation

Source: Republican Platform adopted at GOP National Convention , Aug 12, 2000

Federal government should not interfere with states’ rights

We must acknowledge that the federal government’s role should be to set expectations in policies, then get out of the way and let the states implement and operate those policies as they best know how. Washington must respect that one size does not fit all states and must not overburden states with red tape attached to its policies.
Source: Republican Platform adopted at GOP National Convention , Aug 12, 2000

OpEd: GOP matches agenda of wealthy & corporate leaders

Today, the Republicans understand that tax breaks for the rich, cuts in Medicare, Medicaid, education, and environmental protection, and support of NAFTA, GATT, and other disastrous trade policies are not exactly a winning ticket.

Of course, it IS the agenda of rich folks and corporate leaders, and what the Republicans are paid to deliver. But there are only so many millionaire voters, and Republicans know that this agenda is not going to win points among middle-class and working people--the people who determine the outcome of elections.

Their real ideology--not the sham philosophy of "states' rights" or "personal responsibility" created for public consumption--reflects the interests of a tiny and very privileged segment of the population. Republicans are faced with the dilemma: How to convince working people and the middle class to vote AGAINST their own best interests. Or, equally important, how to get them not to vote at all.

Source: Outsider in the House, by Bernie Sanders, p.128-9 , Jun 17, 1997

More reporting, more watchdogs, and more oversight.

Party signed more reporting, more watchdogs, and more oversight

INCREASE TRANSPARENCY FOR TAXPAYERSMake the government catch up with the times by publishing more data about how it does the people's business. Sunlight really is the best disinfectant.


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Page last updated: Jan 29, 2020