I would like to address several points Jolene Thompson attempted to make in her Nov. 5 letter to the editor.

1. Thompson rails that “Republican Party strongholds have rallied the base into straight-ticket voting ...” Currently, only six states (Alabama, Kentucky, South Carolina, Indiana, Oklahoma and Michigan), constituting 60 electoral votes, allow automatic straight-ticket voting. Of course, one can still vote straight-ticket by voting for each individual office. However, a recent Pew Poll (Sept. 30-Oct. 5) found that Democrats were more likely to cast a straight-ticket vote (43%) than Republicans (35%).

2. “Pulling that red lever meant success and got G.W. Bush elected ...” Bush was elected in 2000. The GOP lost seats in the House and Senate in 2000. So much for straight-ticket voting.

3. “Got our country into a 19-year war.” A total of 110 Democrats voted in favor of the Iraq Resolution (authorizing military force in Iraq). This includes a majority of Senate Democrats (29-21). John Kerry, John Edwards, Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, Harry Reid, Tom Daschle and Chuck Schumer all supported the resolution. Daschle and Reid were the last two Democrat Senate Majority leaders. Schumer is the current Senate Minority Leader. Kerry/Edwards represented the Democrat presidential ticket in 2004. Biden was the Democrat VP candidate in 2008 and 2012. Clinton was the presidential candidate in 2016 and Biden was the candidate this year.

My point? Support for "Bush’s war" has never been a hindrance to the Democrat apparatchik.

It should also be noted that Barack Obama greatly expanded American military operations in Afghanistan. From NPR (June 2016): “Obama dramatically ramped up the U.S. presence in Afghanistan, from a little over 30,000 to more than 100,000 at the peak in 2011.”

4. One more thing: Ms. Thompson need not gnash her teeth. The U.S. currently has more than 80 means-tested welfare programs.

Joe Barker

Ashland

Surprising economy numbers

Many have described the current COVID-19 crisis as a death blow to the economy of the United States.

On Friday, it was announced the October unemployment rate was 6.9%. Isn’t it amazing that in the middle of a pandemic, the current unemployment rate is lower than it was for 57 of Obama's 96 months?

Jason King

Grayson

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