The Lack of Understanding of Political Parties

There is a large percentage (29%) of Hispanics/Latinos that are registered to vote in Florida with no political party affiliation (NPA). If you ask an election worker about their interaction with new citizens when registering them to vote, many can tell you that the new voters decide to have no political affiliation because many do not know what each party stands for. How can we educate the voter on the different parties that exist?

Others may not choose to be part of a party as they believe more in people than in parties.  Hispanics in general tend to vote for the person and not the party. Although, I do know many people who do not know what each political party’s beliefs are.  Some also choose a party due tradition and to the family being from the same party affiliation.  Others choose a party because they are told that it is the party that represents Hispanics.   As a Hispanic, I can say that there is not a specific party that represents us as Hispanics.  Everything depends on how we grew up, on our values.   Do we believe that government should be more or less involved in our lives?  I liked the following website called Diffen in reference to the differences between the Republicans vs. Democrats.

Due to the lack of understanding that exists, I asked two people who are very involved in the two largest political parties of the U.S.A.  to share with us why they are a Democrat and a  Republican.  I want to thank them for taking the time to explain why they are faithful to the party they represent.

President of the Democratic Hispanic Caucus of Florida.

Vivian Rodriguez: President of the Democratic Hispanic Caucus of Florida.

Why Am I a Democrat?

By Vivian Rodríguez

Being a Democrat is who I am and represents the values and beliefs I stand for and hold dear. Everyone is equal in this great nation and there are no exceptions to the rule. Everyone should be respected and celebrated for their diversity and contributions to society. We all deserve a fair shot in achieving equality and no American should ever face discrimination on the basis of religion, race, ethnicity, national origin, gender or sexual orientation.

Traditionally, the Democratic Party has advocated for the rights of the underprivileged and middle class. We stand up for the civil rights of everyone living in this country, including the immigrant community. Democrats support comprehensive immigration reform that will boost our economy and build a stronger more representative nation. Through the Dream Act, young immigrants will be able to become legal residents and citizens, contributing to the fabric of our nation.

We believe in laws that prohibit discrimination in the workplace, housing, and the disenfranchisement of voting rights. We support the Equal Rights Amendment, Employment Non Discrimination Act, American Jobs Act, and Affordable Health Care. We must strive to protect the rights and socio-economic conditions of our fellow Americans by affording them accessible quality health care and the expansion of Medicaid throughout the state of Florida.

Through the Affordable Health Care Act, families will be able to keep their college-bound children on their parents’ insurance plans and insurance companies will no longer be able to refuse to cover their children because of pre-existing medical conditions. Many women will be eligible to receive preventive services for cancer screenings, annual checkups, contraception, and will not be charged a higher premium than men because of their gender. I believe that women should have the right to choose in their personal decisions without having any governmental interference. Democrats believe in helping our seniors by safeguarding their contribution to Social Security and making Medicare stronger by adding new benefits and eliminating fraudulent claims.

Democrats believe that every student has a right to a quality public education system that provides the American dream of prosperity. We must provide college students with affordable tuition options through student loans, Pell Grants, and the American Opportunity Tax Credit. I believe we must support our American workers with strong labor laws. Americans should have the right to organize and lobby for an increase in the state minimum wage, paid sick leave, and health insurance.

Democrats believe in our veterans by passing the post 911 G.I. Bill, supporting our troops who return home with job opportunities and providing them with specialized health care assistance. They are the true heroes who keep our country safe from harm and continue to protect our country and the rights that you exercise in this great nation. I am proud to be an American and even though we may not be a perfect nation, I enjoy the right to be able to debate the issues and hope that one day we will reach, “Equality for All.”

These values and beliefs is what define me as a Democrat.

Hispanic Communications Director for the Rick Scott for Florida Campaign

Jaime Florez: Hispanic Communications Director for the Rick Scott for Florida Campaign

Why Am I A Republican?

By Jaime Florez

To those who migrated, along with the sadness of leaving behind the land and customs, part of the family, friends and some of the best memories, the country where we have arrived offers us a new life, new knowledge, habits and friends, almost a restart. And in that process, the opportunity to place ourselves ideologically where we best see fit.

Many come here and find a new religious congregation where spiritually they feel most comfortable. Others discover new interests; they let themselves get caught up into a new sport or simply fall in love with a new hobby. To me, as a Colombian and I suppose, to many more, the arrival into the United States gave me, amongst many others, the opportunity to consciously define my position in the political spectrum.

Upon arriving here we find a solid democracy and a rich political culture based on a robust bipartisanship. After analyzing platforms and backgrounds I decided on the Republican Party because, as they promote themselves, they are the collectivity of opportunities and prosperity. I firmly believe in free enterprise and in that I fully identify with the Republican ideas.

The prosperity to which they refer to is the result of more and more people creating and growing their own businesses, generating more jobs, paying fair taxes that are wisely invested for the welfare of all. Prosperity does not come to a country that grows its own government apparatus and becomes the largest employer and the main source of livelihood, because having not the need to comply with efficiency, it will end up just squandering resources and eliminating competition. We must create jobs, yes of course, but in the private sector, so that the public sector’s resources are invested in health, education and infrastructure, not in the scaffolding function of government.

Opposing politics have led this nation through the difficult and wrong path of fiscal irresponsibility. As a Republican I think it is imperative that we cut spending and government waste, we put stop to the careless spending of public resources and find a way to balance our budget reasonably. It is the only way to restore the country’s fiscal health which it so requires, to both stabilize and heal its finances.

I believe, so I am a Republican, in the defense of basic social principles. I defend individual freedoms and advocate that the United States fulfill its role as a defending nation of human rights, democracy and self-determination of peoples. We are the last stronghold of those basic principles and we cannot allow humanity to fall into the hands of regimes that disregard the importance and value of the human being.

The Republican Party is the option of compassion and respect for others.

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