“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times” is the famous opening line from Charles Dickens’ novel A Tale of Two Cities. It is an apt description of the contrast we saw between Republicans and Democrats this week.
It was my privilege to stand on stage with President Trump, Governor Ducey, Senator McSally, Navajo Nation Vice President Lizer, and Arizona Members of Congress Biggs, Gosar, Lesko, and Schweikert, in front of an enthusiastic crowd of thousands that packed into the Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Phoenix. Thousands more, who did not have room to enter the building, stood outside and enjoyed the proceedings on a jumbotron screen.
They cheered loudly as President Trump described our country’s latest economic statistics: Unemployment at a 50-year low, record lows in minority unemployment, and near-record employment for women. They applauded the news that more than 10 million Americans have been lifted off welfare rolls. More cheers echoed around the jam-packed arena as the President described the recent trade agreements signed with Mexico, Canada, and China. The crowd was delighted to hear that our nation is safer today – we have the most powerful military in the world, the ISIS caliphate has been destroyed, and several major terrorist leaders have been eliminated.
It was a celebration of America, a celebration of success.
However, on the same night, as President Trump was highlighting America’s victories in Las Vegas, NV, six Democrat candidates for President were engaged in a fiery debate filled with sharp attacks – not only toward President Trump – but toward each other.
The Democrat Party changed its rules to allow on stage a billionaire who seems to have a political platform based solely on limiting Americans’ rights. Michael Bloomberg opposes the right to keep and bear arms, the right to life, and the right to walk down the street as an African American youth without being stood up against a wall and frisked. He even opposes your right to purchase a soft drink larger than sixteen ounces. Clearly, he has not experienced a hot Arizona summer.
While Bloomberg was attacked for remarks and policies he has made in the past, including poor treatment of employees, it also appeared throughout the debate that he was being attacked simply for being a billionaire.
The six candidates also seemed to be competing on who could present a more dystopian climate change calamity. It’s unclear from the leading Democrat candidates for President if the climate disaster is now scheduled to hit in 2050, 2045, or even 2035. Gloom, doom, and disaster seemed the order of the day.
Other attacks consisted of scolding for memory lapses and accusations of “Are you trying to say I’m dumb?” The biggest attack on self-described Socialist and current Democrat frontrunner, Bernie Sanders, came from Bloomberg, who said that our country’s “best known socialist happens to be a millionaire who owns three houses.”
Quite the contrast. Here in Arizona, we celebrate success; however, on the Democrat stage in Nevada, success was viewed as a negative.
President Trump ended his rally in Phoenix by boldly declaring, “The best is yet to come.” The energized crowd followed his lead, shouting the words with him. We at the Republican Party are working toward a future filled with opportunity and liberty for all Americans.
Meanwhile, based on the words and performances of the Democrats on stage in Las Vegas, the Left has now become consumed with endless bickering, limiting our rights and freedoms, and tearing down the success of others.
A tale of two parties: One presenting a future that is bright, the other offering a future that is bleak. Arizonans have the power to choose which future they want in November.
Dr. Kelli Ward is a family physician, two-term Arizona state senator, and the chairwoman of the Republican Party of Arizona. On Twitter: @KelliWardAZ.