RSU College Republicans met for their weekly meeting Monday evening in Baird Hall and Dakota Wood, Republican candidate for Oklahoma’s 2nd Congressional District spoke to students about the political process and current issues.
Wood addressed the group and opened the floor to questions, most importantly he responded to the top issues the students felt they are facing.
The students listed job availability, debt, inflation, health care and the tax code as the top issues.
One student listed having a “good” job available after graduation as her priority. Another said that the debt and inflation is one thing he worried about most.
His concerns centered on the value of U.S. currency and the ability to maintain current levels.
The students also discussed social issue and many agreed they should be handled at the state level.
Wood provided a unique insight into these issues and much more as he explained in depth how the different issues play a role in the big picture.
One example Wood gave was how “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” played a role in the current issue of “gay marriage”.
Wood explained that the military has been used as way to test social issues.
Government officials will put into place a policy like “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” in the military because the military is government-run and any policy that is implemented will cross state lines, he said.
For example when the military first adopted the policy then homosexuals could serve in the military as long as they did so privately. No outward expression of their private life could be made.
Now under the current administration “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” no longer exists and homosexuals can practice openly.
The problem that lies beyond the moral implications is that in states that have legalized homosexual marriages the military is now obligated to support them as well.
In other words, the “partner” of a soldier is recognized in health, visitation and other benefits. However, once the soldier is reassigned to another base in a state that doesn’t recognize the marriage then an issue occurs.
This is one way to bring the issue to become a federal concern and the issue then will be addressed at that level, Wood said.
What this does is take the power away from the states and prevents the decision that is made locally from being considered.
Then you have the federal decision being enforced on the states because it is now required for the military to recognize the marriage.
Wood provided the example to show students how the federal government has used the military to force social issues upon all citizens of the United States.
Wood continued to address student concerns and stated that another concern for the next president will be the Supreme Court.
Going beyond the typical political speech, Wood took the time to explain each issue and state clearly what he stood for and his goals if elected.
One of Wood’s plans is to make the tax code a priority. Wood favors the fair tax system.
Most of the lobbying and exceptions that are made in Washington are directly related to the tax code.
“If you scrap the tax code and go to a straight consumption tax where the tax is collected at the tax register, whether you are buying a yacht or loaf of bread, where are the lobbyist, where is the exception to that rule? You get rid of a lot of problems and return the wealth to the private sector,” said Wood.
Wood also spoke about understanding the issues completely and how the impact of one change will affect other issues.
He emphasized that an elected official should be someone who will think clearly, consider the long-term effect of each decision and take a moderate approach to developing relationships while dealing with the issues.
Dustin Rowe, another Republican candidate for the 2nd Congressional District, is scheduled to speak at the March 26 meeting. Plans are being finalized for Rogers County Sheriff Scott Walton and Republican sheriff candidate Cole Butler to be guest speakers at future meetings.The group will be participating in the PETA Barbecue held at RSU on April 5.