I got a good chuckle from Alan Carabine's letter describing Republicans as "realists" ("Health care is not a 'right' — it is a responsibility," July 1).

Was he describing our local ones who don't believe in ethics reform, who gave away $13 million to silence a private contractor and who deny the negative consequences of lowest per-pupil spending in the nation?

Or the ones in D.C. who believe that the president was born in Kenya, that trickle-down economics works (while the rich are fattening their wallets, the middle-class disappears and our economy continues to stagnate), that the war in Iraq would pay for itself and that thought it wise to downgrade our credit rating?

Realist wasn't the description I was thinking. In fact, in today's political climate, neither party should be described as "realist." However, the Affordable Care Act is a step in the right direction and President Obama couldn't have done it without the idea of the individual mandate created by the Heritage Foundation, an idea endorsed by Sen. Orrin Hatch in the mid-90s, and without moderate Mitt Romney providing the model used now by the Federal Government.

Dane Henderson