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Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Republicans Officially Love Uber

Posted By on Wed, Aug 6, 2014 at 12:28 PM

click to enlarge You betcha! - WIKIMEDIA COMMONS
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  • You betcha!
As deeply Democratic blue as most of California is, Silicon Valley is not forbidden territory for Republicans.

Sen. Rand Paul, son of former congressman Ron, recently finished up a swoop through the South Bay, where adherents to his Ayn Rand-inspired brand of tiny or no government regulation are in good supply. And political venture capitalist Ron Conway, who as an early investor in Airbnb, Twitter, and Mayor Ed Lee owns a fair chunk of each, was a lifelong registered Republican before he decided to invest in San Francisco politics. 

And in the Republican Party, Silicon Valley has fans — specifically, Republicans are big fans of Uber.

The GOP has officially declared support for Uber and their "ride-sharing brethren" in their crusade against regulation big-government meddling.

"Our cities need Uber," the party is declaring In a GOP.com petition circulating today in support of the taxi-alternatives. 

In a e-mail blast from Republican National Committee chairwoman Katie Walsh, Republicans are exhorted to stand up for Uber and innovation in their fight against government bureaucrats.

All pretty boilerplate stuff, but somewhat interesting to see how a Silicon Valley favorite can be held up as a prime example of small government in action.

Here's an except from the email in support of Uber:

Free markets work.

When government is taken out of the equation, businesses can innovate, individuals can create, entrepreneurs can flourish and our economy can thrive.

Our cities also deserve innovative, efficient and safe transportation choices without excessive and intrusive bureaucratic red tape.

That’s why our cities need innovative solutions like the Uber car service.

Uber is an alternative to taxis. They pay their own drivers, handle their own licensing and background checks, and set their prices based on market demand, not flat fees.

With a business model based on market demand, their cabs are typically cleaner, more dependable and more economical than normal union-regulated taxis.

However, government officials are trying to block Uber from providing services simply because it’s cutting into the taxi unions' profits. In many cases, they’ve even gone so far as to threaten Uber with legal action.

Enough is enough.
So far, anyway, Uber isn't shying away from its fans on the right. "Everybody loves Uber," company spokesman Lane Kasselman noted in an interview with TheHill.com.

Of course, Uber has plenty of haters on the left and among taxi drivers. For them, here's one more reason to hate.

No word on whether Lyft has the same love. 
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About The Author

Chris Roberts

Bio:
Chris Roberts has spent most of his adult life working in San Francisco news media, which is to say he's still a teenager in Middle American years. He has covered marijuana, drug policy, and politics for SF Weekly since 2009.

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