QUITE common is the quadrennial early November Tuesday declaration that “This is the most important election in our lifetimes!” The cliche notwithstanding, this may indeed be one of those elections.
A second term for Barack Obama would at the very least continue an anti-business, anti-fossil fuel, anti-American exceptionalism agenda. Also, it could result in two or more U.S. Supreme Court appointees who would ratify Obama's philosophy — and not just for four years but for a lifetime.
Mitt Romney is a proven leader with demonstrated executive skills. He celebrates American ingenuity and the values that produced the most important republic in world history. He would make this a more valuable, less-indebted country for future generations, while restoring respect for America and reducing its dependence on foreign energy.
Obama's own words four years ago are relevant here: His presidency would be a “one-term proposition” if he failed to rebuild the poor economy he inherited. He has failed. If Romney wins, he would also inherent a poor economy. The difference is that he has the skills, the focus and the energy to do something about it. In the 2012 version of “the most important” election, Romney is the clear choice.
The Oklahoman also makes the following recommendations for Tuesday's election:
SQ 758 would limit the growth of property tax assessment valuations to 3 percent annually, a reduction from the current cap of 5 percent. Vote yes to reduce the cap.
SQ 759 would ban the use of affirmative action programs in state government employment, education and contracting decisions. This is a carefully targeted measure that doesn't affect the private sector or impact state involvement with federal programs for the disabled or similar groups. Government should not discriminate for or against citizens based on race or gender. Vote yes to restrict reverse discrimination.
SQ 762 would amend Oklahoma's constitution to remove the governor from the parole process for nonviolent offenders. The governor's approval would still be required for inmates convicted of violent crimes; other cases would be handled by the state Pardon and Parole Board. Vote yes to remove Oklahoma's distinction of being the only state that still pushes every parole application to the governor's desk.
SQ 764 would create the Water Infrastructure Credit Enhancement Reserve Fund and allow the Oklahoma Water Resources Board to issue bonds for water/sewage infrastructure. Vote yes for this sensible measure.
SQ 765 would eliminate the Department of Human Services commission and place the DHS agency director, who will be a gubernatorial appointee requiring Senate confirmation, in full charge of the agency. Vote yes on this major restructuring of the largest component of state government.
SQ 766 would exempt all intangible personal property from property tax. Because “intangible” property includes everything from copyrights to licenses, Oklahomans could pay as much as $60 million in increased taxes if SQ 766 fails. Vote yes to avoid a system that would repel economic growth.
The state's three Republican incumbents — Frank Lucas (3rd District), Tom Cole (4th) and James Lankford (5th) — deserve another term. For the two open seats in eastern Oklahoma, the Republican nominees deserve to win. They are Jim Bridenstine (1st District) and Markwayne Mullin (2nd).
In the Oklahoma County sheriff's race, we support Democratic incumbent John Whetsel, who is seeking a fifth term.
Depending on your age and your values, this may not be the most important election in your lifetime. What's truly important is your participation. Oklahoma isn't a battleground state in the presidential election, and Obama may again lose in all 77 counties. But Tuesday's ballot doesn't begin and end with the presidential race.
Vote as if this really is the most important election in your lifetime. It could prove to be just that.