Having watched six Republican presidential debates, I’m trying to parse what the candidates are trying to say [“Clash of front-runners,” News, Jan. 15]. All I hear is people arguing — no ideas, no policy, no substance.

When I talk to some Republican voters, I’m struck by their dogmatic adherence to vote on a single issue, such as abortion rights or same-sex marriage. These issues ultimately don’t affect them because no one is making them get an abortion or marry someone of the same gender.

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These are the issues I want to hear candidates discuss: handling terrorism, saving the middle class, making college affordable and creating an alternative to Obamacare.

The issues of abortion rights and same-sex marriage are distractions and red meat to the GOP base.

Kerry Prep, Huntington