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JESSICA ANDERSON: The American Dream Is Not Dead, We Just Need Leaders Willing To Fight For It

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Jessica Anderson Contributor
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Last night, the second Republican presidential debate was held at the Reagan Library in Simi Valley. With many overtures to President Reagan and his legacy, what was missing from last night’s debate was a thorough discussion of the policy solutions that will restore faith in the American Dream and trust in our elected officials to achieve it.

Sure, some candidates had their moments – Vice President Mike Pence and Ambassador Nikki Haley called out Vivek Ramaswamy for his business dealings in China, and Governor DeSantis stood his ground alongside the pro-life Americans and their fight for the unborn. Still, the majority of the conversations from last night and the first debate were petty and missed the point.

Take border security. Currently, young migrant children – being used as a tool for drug traffickers and dangerous cartels – are being assaulted at the border or getting caught in razor wire as they are forced into a dangerous journey. Illegal aliens are raising foreign flags on American soil. In our communities, fentanyl poisoning has become the leading cause of death for young Americans. This week alone, news broke of a 95-year-old U.S. veteran being kicked out of his nursing home facility in New York City to create more space for the thousands of illegal migrants flooding the community. Not to mention that just a few days ago the southern border saw another record set with around 11,000 migrants crossing the border from Sunday to Monday. (RELATED: MICHAEL MACHERA: The Stakes Are Raised At The Second Republican Debate)

Biden’s border crisis is top of mind for voters for all of these reasons. But simply calling out the Biden administration for their open borders policies is not enough to put an end to this historic, humanitarian crisis. Americans are tired of watching their own leaders put the interests of illegal migrants ahead of the interests of our own citizens to fulfill a political agenda. Voters are eager for permanent solutions to protect American sovereignty and security that cannot be undone during future administrations.

Another example from last night was the conversation on crime. This week, Philadelphia saw another episode of violence and looting as local businesses dealt with over 100 criminals stealing from their stores. In Baltimore, after a repeat offender was released from prison early on parole, he murdered a young female tech CEO in her home.

While the Democrats’ Defund the Police movement and rogue prosecutors surely share a lot of the blame for the historically high crime rates, Republicans cannot fail to address other failures on criminal justice issues – like the First Step Act. Voters want to hear how each candidate is going to fix the problems of the past, address the weaponization of our federal law enforcement agencies against American citizens, and restore a sense of security in America.

Finally, look at the discussion around federal spending. With historic inflation and rising interest rates, every American feels the consequences of Bidenomics. Over the past two years, the Biden administration and Democrats in Congress have seemed hell-bent on destroying the American Dream and individual opportunity if it means they can implement their Green New Deal extremism and solidify their political control. (RELATED: JON DECKER: The GOP Is Still Reagan’s Party)

Putting Americans first is not just the campaign slogan of merely one candidate, but the heartbeat of the American people. This race will ultimately come down to whether candidates can put aside their own political ambition and then convince Americans their interests will be put first.

Much of America has changed since President Reagan was in office, but what hasn’t changed is the desire for Americans to have a leader who will fight for them. While we haven’t given up on the American Dream, we’ve lost leaders who will fight for it instead of themselves.

Last night showed that, although the Republican primary is not over yet, candidates who want to have a fighting chance to make it to the finish line will need to meet the moment we’re in and show voters a stronger vision for the future.

Jessica Anderson is the President of the Sentinel Action Fund.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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