Bucknam: If Republicans are ‘nervous,’ why is left frantically stifling dissent?

State GOP leader responds to VTDigger letter to Republicans

by Deb Bucknam

On May 9, Kevin Ellis wrote an open letter to Republicans in VTDigger.  His commentary echoes Leftists’ blinkered view of Republicans, and more disturbingly, their dystopian view of our Republic.   

Here is the my response: 

Democrats and Progressives: The Vermont GOP is in great shape. The people running the GOP are collectively the best I have known in my long years with the party.  To a man and woman, the leadership and staff are a rare commodity in the political arena: these folks have no personal agendas, and seamlessly work together for Vermonters. We are happy warriors for our party and our state. 

In addition, the Vermont GOP is witnessing over the top enthusiasm from Vermonters who are sick of Democrats’ and Progressives’ antediluvian tribalism and radical authoritarianism.  Cancel culture by elitist Scolds is not winning with Vermonters.  Vermonters have always been a tolerant and “live and let live” bunch, but the Left has decided Vermonters—except themselves—are ignorant, childish, and in need of care and supervision.  Republicans, on the other hand, believe our fellow Vermonters are adults, and we trust Vermonters to make the right decisions for themselves and their families.  Cutting taxes?  Yes.  Because we believe that Vermonters know how to spend money far more wisely than the Leftist  politicians whose projects often make no sense except as an employment agency for those who strive for lucrative government careers, or payback to corporate and union donors.   

Mr. Ellis said that his children’s generation viewed “efforts to strangle government as strange”.  Wow.  Young people are energetic, adventurous, freedom loving and, most importantly, rebellious.  It would be strange indeed if young people long to comply with the dictates of  a  multi-trillion dollar government behemoth with its hydra- headed stranglehold on virtually every aspect of our lives. Republicans champion individual rights and the wonderful diversity of every human soul.  That is the wave of the future, not old style oppressive government that has crushed humanity for thousands of years.

 And, yes, the GOP does champion families.  We believe that families know best how to raise, teach and support their children.   Leftists, on the other hand, believe families are too stupid to know what is best for their children; that only Father Government knows best. We have seen the result:  the pandemic has demonstrated how big government, aligned with big public unions, have thrown kids under the school bus by following, not the science, but the wellbeing of the teacher’s unions, resulting in long term damage to our kids’ education and mental health.  Vermont Republicans, in contrast, strongly support parental choice for their children’s education, a policy also supported by the vast majority of marginalized communities.  All Vermonters want the same freedom to choose the best education for their children that the elites now enjoy. 

In his letter, Mr. Ellis claims Republicans are nervous.  Hmm. Then why is the Left frantically trying to silence dissent?   Calling people White Supremacists—the newest slur in the Left’s long catalogue of slurs against people who disagree with them—is the classic way to shut down dissent.  The latest example of this technique is the Left’s attacks on Republicans’ supporting voter integrity measures.  More than a decade ago, Democrats also supported voter integrity, with former President Jimmy Carter and former Secretary of State James Baker issuing a report supporting such measures. Now the Left, instead of having a discussion about the best way to ensure all voters have easy access to the ballot box while ensuring election integrity, slur Republicans by calling their proposals racist. These attacks are proof positive of the Left’s nervousness over the public’s view of their policies—for if the Left  had confidence in their policies, they would not need to slander their opponents. As Governor Scott said in his second inaugural address:  “We can, and will, debate on policy—and that’s ok—but let’s focus on the merits of our ideas.”  The Left has rejected that wise counsel. 

Finally, unlike the Left, which requires its members to submit to the latest orthodoxy,  Republicans reject purging their members and enforcing conformity. The Vermont Republican Party boasts members from every race, creed, ethnic background, and sexual orientation.  We are proud of our diversity. 

Mr. Ellis mentioned Sen. Randy Brock and Governor Scott as men he approves as Republican leaders. I agree.  Both men are talented, intelligent, and passionate and both have Vermonters’ best interest at heart. As a result, they have accomplished much for our state.  I am also proud of the thousands of  Republicans in this state who are also talented, intelligent, and passionate about Vermont and its people. We do not always agree 100%, but that is a valuable trait for a political party in a democracy. 

So, Democrats and Progressives: The Vermont Republican Party is a vibrant, diverse party, and a party which is on the move to make historic gains in the next election and beyond.   

The author, an attorney and Walden resident, is vice-chair of the Vermont Republican Party.

Categories: Commentary

5 replies »

  1. For Republicans to regain a position of consequence in this state we must rise above the infighting within the Republican party. This “RINO” crap has to be stifled. Moderate to slightly left leaning, self identified Republicans have got to be at least tolerated under a bigger tent to grow the party. The days of George D. Aiken, and Deane C. Davis are history, and not likely to return as long as the name calling, and infighting rules. I was personally, and deeply disappointed with Gov. Scott’s position regarding magazine limitations on modern sporting semi-automatic rifles, but if a certain pony tailed “Progressive” flatlander had of been in office at the time would we still be able to have those rifles ? Politics is, in my opinion, the dirtiest game in the world, and the best we can hope for is to elect the politicians that we can best live with as none of them are going to perfectly mirror all of our individual ideals. In other words even if you have to put a close pin on your nose, fill in that dot next to the Republican candidate, it’s still going to be better than the”Progressive”.

  2. Great article, Represenative Bucknam! Here! Here! For decades I contributed sports articles, features, as well as commentaries regarding the Israel/Palestine Conflict for The Barre Times until 2016 when their new alt-left, anti First Amendment egoist-editor blacklisted Me. The Burlington Free Press editor also canceled my commentaries after decades of contributions. The Democratic Party, the party of Inclusiveness and social justice, yadda, yadda? Madness! They want to cancel our two first amendments, support racist orgs such as BLM, BDS, Peace&Justice for Palestine, Defund Police, Antifah,support transgender boys beating Real girls and dashing their athletic dreams, and consider Judeo-Christianity fables holding back a brave new world of Marxism.
    These children of hairy hippies are more contrary to basic family values and common sense than their kumbaya chanting pagan parents.

  3. Ms. Buckham,

    This response tells me that you don’t like how liberals see or talk about your party. I can understand that, there has been a lot of that both ways. I’d like to know though how you respond to specific issues that contribute to why liberals feel this way. What is your stance on the results of the election, BLM, transgender rights, gay marriage, police brutality, Israel/Palestine, do you acknowledge climate change, is gun violence an issue?

    Blaming big government and liberals isn’t good enough. Liberals are frustrated with conservatives because for four years you stood by and said nothing while our president was hateful, disrespectful, and lied. Its interesting that you are say liberals are trying to silence dissent. Have you ever listened to Trump speak? He trashes anyone that doesn’t agree with him. How can you not take any responsibility for the role Donald Trump has played in our growing divide?

    You say the GOP is in great shape. I live in Washington DC and watched as the capitol was breached at the urging of a REPUBLICAN president. People died and it could have been a lot worse. Your party takes no responsibility at all and goes as far to compare it to tourism. The lack of accountability is why liberals are frustrated with you. You have an opportunity to lead on all the issues you talk about in your post, but you have to address them specifically and clearly.