We have an election coming up in less than 90 days. You need to think about the choices you make on that piece of paper, as those choices will impact your life for years to come. Here are a few things to think about.

Do you want to elect state senators and representatives that support a governor who ordered the fence around the capitol building removed while we were in the midst of daily protests? The prevention and punishment of crime are fundamental obligations of our government. Yes, people have a First Amendment right to speech and protest, but that does not carry to a right to deface and destroy government property (your property, as you actually paid for it). It should not allow them to destroy and plunder their neighbors’ small businesses.

Martin Luther King Jr. and others were able to demonstrate and protest peacefully, and advance their cause without violating others’ rights. Why aren’t we enforcing the law today? When “peaceful” protestors show up to an event with their backpacks already loaded with concrete chunks, glass bottles, and rocks, then obviously the intent is not to be peaceful. While many of the protestors do have the intent to stage peaceful marches, they either need to police their own events to prevent violence or allow law enforcement to do it.

Do you want to elect federal officials (senators, congressmen) who are publicly blaming President Trump for racial problems in America? He has only been president for a bit more than three years. The presumptive Democratic candidate for president worked for eight years directly for the first black president this country elected. Were they able to solve those issues when a black man held the highest office in the land? No. These problems are rooted very deeply. They need to be solved, but it takes time. If Joe Biden made no progress in his first eight years, what would he do differently now?

Do you want to elect people that support a plan to do away with millions of American jobs? The oil and natural gas industry support more than 10 million jobs. Due to improvements in technology and efficiency, air quality has improved by 77 percent since 1970 (7 percent just in Trump’s three years) while increasing production to the point where Americans have saved more than $200 billion a year in energy costs. This is because the U.S. is now a net exporter of energy, not an importer at the mercy of Middle East countries.

This industry will continue to move toward cleaner sources of energy, but at a pace that sustains the economy and our security, not destroys them. If Joe Biden thinks he can create millions of jobs in clean energy overnight, why didn’t he do it when he had eight years advising the Oval Office or 36 years in the Senate? Oh, and by the way, the goal of the progressives is to install 500 million solar panels within five years. The only way this will happen is to buy them from China, and other countries such as Australia have discovered those panels fall apart within five years due to shoddy construction. And additionally, who is the biggest violator of the Paris Climate Agreement? China.

Do you want to elect state officials that support illegal immigration? Since its very founding our country has welcomed immigrants, but at a controlled rate. Unlimited influx of people who are not able to support themselves, and then giving them free medical care and reduced college tuition while our own citizens work to provide those things for themselves, will quickly devastate state and federal budgets. New Jersey just passed a bill allowing illegal immigrants to obtain professional and occupational licenses in that state despite a federal law prohibiting this. Which state will be next to follow this trend? Already, immigrants in Colorado who can’t provide proof they are in the country legally can get a driver’s license. What’s next down this path?

Do you want to elect candidates who advocate for defunding and disarming law enforcement and the military? The Congressional Progressive Caucus has declared their intent to oppose the National Defense Authorization Act in the House unless the defense budget is reduced by at least 10 percent this year. Remember the quote from several years ago? “It will be a great day when our schools have all the money they need, and the Air Force has to have a bake-sale to buy a bomber.” Well, the federal constitution mandates that the federal government pay for our national defense. Nowhere in that document is supporting or funding local education even mentioned. That is a state and local responsibility.

Our military suffered extensive cuts during the Obama era and is just now recovering. The progressives think that cutting defense and spending more on foreign aid and diplomats will allow us to solve our problems just by playing nice. We have seen that doesn’t work with totalitarian governments like China and North Korea. Look at what is happening in Taiwan this month despite a global agreement by China to play nice when control of that region was given to them 20 years ago.

It takes an effort to be an informed voter. Before you complete that ballot, do some research and see what the candidates have accomplished in their past terms and what the end results of their stated platforms will be.

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