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Argument: Republicans have discipline and authority of football coaches

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Steve Kornacki. "Why your coach voter Republican." Wall Street Journal. September 2, 2009: "There's no evidence that coaches with a conservative bent are better coaches or more likely to get jobs. Football coaches aren't the most diverse group, which may help explain their political similarities. [...] Still, could it be that football coaches, just by the nature of the job, are more comfortable on the right end of the political spectrum? [...] 'I'd say that sounds likely—very likely,' said Bobby Bowden, the longtime Florida State coach and an outspoken Republican. Mr. Bowden, a 79-year-old native Alabaman, describes himself as a lifelong conservative who—like many white Southerners of his generation—migrated from the Democratic Party to the GOP a few decades ago. There is, he says, a natural connection between his political and coaching philosophies. 'In coaching, you've got to have more discipline and you've got to be more strict and just conservative, I think. It fits with the Republicans,' he said. Mr. Holtz, who coached Notre Dame to its last national championship in 1988, draws a parallel between the standards and rules that most coaches set for their players and the Republican vision of how American society ought to operate. 'You aren't entitled to anything. You don't inherit anything. You get what you earn—your position on the team,' Mr. Holtz said. 'You're treated like everybody else. You're held accountable for your actions. You understand that your decisions affect other people on that team…There's winners, there's losers, and there's competitiveness.' Tom Osborne, who coached the Nebraska Cornhuskers for 25 seasons before serving three terms in Congress as a Republican, suggested that football coaches probably look at their own lives and careers as testaments to the conservative principle of self-reliance. 'There's an awful lot of people who want to be in coaching for the number of jobs,' he said. 'It's highly competitive. And many of them have had to spend a fair amount of time as graduate assistants, interns—as much as four, five, six, seven, eight years—making very, very little money to get into the profession. And they will work 70, 80, 90 hours a week during the season. 'I think that background—adherence to discipline, sometimes sacrifice, loyalty to core values—those things tend to have people move in that direction.' [...] Some cite geography—the fact that so many coaches have roots in the South, a staunchly Republican region. Others point out that Republicans tend to revere strong, singular executive leaders—a pretty good description of a coach."

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