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Letter: GOP hopefuls must look past social issues

Republican presidential contender Texas Sen. Ted Cruz addresses

Republican presidential contender Texas Sen. Ted Cruz addresses the 2016 South Carolina Tea Party Coalition Convention in Myrtle Beach, S.C., on Jan. 16, 2016. Credit: Getty Images / Scott Olson

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.

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